Of course the Democrats jumped on President Donald Trump’s positive COVID-19 test to push a delay in Amy Coney Barrett’s hearing.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and Senate Judiciary Committee Ranking Democrat Dianne Feinstein released a joint statement:

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and Senator Dianne Feinstein, the ranking Democrat on the Judiciary Committee, said Friday that the upcoming confirmation hearings for Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett must be postponed to allow Barrett and senators who were potentially exposed to the virus to be tested and isolate.

“It is premature for Chairman Graham to commit to a hearing schedule when we do not know the full extent of potential exposure stemming from the president’s infection and before the White House puts in place a contact tracing plan to prevent further spread of the disease,” the pair said in a statement.

“The unfortunate news about the infection of our colleague Senator Mike Lee makes even more clear that health and safety must guide the schedule for all Senate activities, including hearings,” the statement read.

Lee took the test on Thursday and the result came out Friday morning. He said he “will be back to work in time to join my Judiciary Committee colleagues in advancing the Supreme Court nomination.”

The hearings are scheduled to begin on October 12 with a committee vote on October 22.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell does not want a delay.

Graham also said the Senate is “on track” to start the hearings on time. He even tweeted this morning that he looks forward “to welcoming back” Lee to proceed with ACB’s nomination.

McConnell spoke to Hugh Hewitt Friday morning:

McConnell told conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt earlier Friday that he has yet to choose a date for the final floor vote but that Democrats will be unable to delay Barrett’s confirmation. But fallout from the pandemic is largely out of his control.

“Our biggest enemy, obviously, is what we were talking about at the beginning of the interview — the coronavirus, keeping everybody healthy and well and in place to do our job,” he said.

McConnell added that portions of Barrett’s confirmation hearings are likely to be conducted remotely, telling Hewitt that he was not yet sure whether senators who met with Barrett and the White House officials had contracted the virus.

“It can sneak up on you as it did with the president and the first lady. So we’re keeping an eye on everyone,” McConnell said.

 

 
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