Mason students express opposition and support for Amy Coney Barrett as Supreme Court justice
BY SUDIKSHA KOCHI STAFF WRITER
After much pushing by Republicans, the Senate voted to confirm Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the U.S. Supreme Court just a week before the presidential election. This makes her the 115th Associate Justice to serve on the court as she succeeds late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
According to The New York Times, it was the “first time in 151 years that a justice had been confirmed without support from a single member of the minority party.”
Students expressed their opinions on the vote.
Sophomore Government and International Politics major Eva Pecora said that the confirmation was not the right decision.
“Amy Coney Barrett’s confirmation terrifies me,” Pecora said. “Her personal values terrify me, her lack of experience terrifies me, the manner in which she was appointed and confirmed terrifies me, the effect that this will have on the norms of the supreme court terrifies me. The entire thing is terrifying.”
Pecora said that the dynamic of politics in the Supreme Court will likely be permanently changed.
“Firstly, the polarization that we’ve seen affect America is now affecting the Supreme Court. The highest court in the land isn’t supposed to be partisan, but during Trump’s time in office, it has become that way,” she said. “Second, the threat of court-packing if Biden wins the election has the potential to change the future of the Supreme Court forever, but he isn’t left with many other options.”
Pecora believes that Barrett will not uphold Ginsburg’s values.
“Barrett has shown time and time again that her values are outdated, unfair and unjust, which is everything RBG spent her life fighting against,” Pecora said. “I am not confident that Amy Coney Barrett can make unbiased and impartial decisions to help progress our country towards justice in the way that RBG did.”
Sophomore Communication major Kaylin Lear expressed a similar opinion, highlighting her concern for progress.
“I am honestly disappointed that she was appointed Supreme Court justice. I do not think she is fit to fill the role,” Lear said. “I feel that this is a step back in all of the progress that was made towards women’s rights.”
Lear believes that future political decisions taken by the Supreme Court will be biased towards Republicans.
“Because the court is now majority Republican, I think there will be a lot of discrepancies and controversy over Barrett’s rulings,” Lear said.
However, senior Communication major Megan Cleveland held a different opinion, explaining the importance of having women in power.
“I think that Amy Barrett is a successful strong woman who will be capable of this position. I think that a woman who is a mother of multiple young children, a previous professor and has strong beliefs in the Constitution of the U.S. is something we need within the Supreme Court,” she said. “I believe that Amy Barrett will stand strong with the Constitution and serve her duties as a fair Supreme Court member, regardless of her religion, sex or skin color.”
Cleveland explained that someone who has the right intentions deserves to have a chance to serve their duties as part of the Supreme Court.
“Personally, I don’t like to assume that someone will be good or bad based on their personal beliefs or lifestyle,” Cleveland said. “In a world controlled by men, I am personally glad to see a woman selected to the court and hope she represents women and a competent and capable judge.”
She said that the confirmation was the right decision.
“There is nothing stated in the Constitution that says the current president cannot submit a name for the Supreme Court,” Cleveland said. “I think the president of the U.S. has the right to submit whoever they want to be considered to the Supreme Court, but I also feel that the Senate should properly review the credentials of the submission and appoint the submission if deemed worthy.”