BOSTON—Today, in a party-line vote, the Senate Judiciary Committee voted to advance the nomination of Judge Amy Coney Barrett to fill Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s seat on the United States Supreme Court — ramming forward the Senate majority’s unprecedented and illegitimate confirmation process. This rush to fill the seat before passing any pandemic relief disregards the global health crisis that has infected more than 8 million people in the U.S., taken the lives of more than 220,000, and left 7.9 percent of the workforce without a job. Forging ahead with a confirmation also ignores the millions of votes already cast in the 2020 election and national outcry against a nominee with a record of opposing abortion rights.
Statement from Dr. Jennifer Childs-Roshak, Planned Parenthood Advocacy Fund of Massachusetts:
Amy Coney Barrett’s terrifying record and judicial philosophy on reproductive rights, health care, LGBTQ+ issues, and racial discrimination are dangerously out of touch with the American people, and are clearly disqualifying.
Senate Republicans are ignoring global health and economic crises and casting aside the wishes of the American people in order to slam through this sham political confirmation process. With 16 abortion-related cases only one step away from the Supreme Court, Barrett will undoubtedly use any one of them to overturn Roe v. Wade and roll back our rights.
We can no longer rely on the Supreme Court to protect even our most basic freedoms. State lawmakers must take immediate action to pass the ROE Act to ensure abortion will always be safe legal and accessible here. While Senate Republicans have failed to honor Justice Ginsburg and the wishes of the American people, Massachusetts can and must build upon her legacy by passing the ROE Act.
Despite the fact that more than 40 million people have already voted, Mitch McConnell plans to hold a full Senate vote to confirm Barrett to Justice Ginsburg’s seat early next week. If the vote succeeds, Barrett will be seated on the Supreme Court just days before the conclusion of the 2020 election.
Barrett dodged questions on reproductive health care access, the Affordable Care Act, marriage equality, voting rights, and racial discrimination during her confirmation hearing.
The ROE Act, among other provisions, builds safeguards for young people seeking abortion care; includes abortion in the pregnancy-related safety-net coverage provided to Massachusetts residents ineligible for MassHealth coverage; ensures access to abortion after 24 weeks of pregnancy in cases of fatal fetal diagnosis; reforms state law to remove inflammatory definitions and medically unnecessary restrictions; and codifies the principles of reproductive freedom into state law.