Several elected Democrats are accusing Republican-appointed Supreme Court justices of lying in their Senate testimony about their views of Roe v. Wade.
Associate Justices Neil Gorsuch, Brett Kavanaugh and Amy Coney Barrett all reportedly support a leaked draft opinion overturning the 49-year-old ruling creating a constitutional right to abortion. During their confirmation hearings, all three justices refused to comment on whether or not they personally opposed Roe v. Wade. Rather, they pledged to respect previous rulings, with Kavanaugh referring to Roe as “entitled the respect under principles of stare decisis.”
Notably, none of the justices pledged to uphold or overturn Roe v. Wade. Gorsuch testified that he “would have walked out the door” if then-President Donald Trump requested a promise to reverse the ruling. However, that did not stop top Democrats, starting with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, from accusing the justices of misleading Congress about their views.
“Several of these conservative Justices, who are in no way accountable to the American people, have lied to the U.S. Senate, ripped up the Constitution and defiled both precedent and the Supreme Court’s reputation,” they said in a statement shortly after the draft leaked.
New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand compared the justices’ testimonies to fraudulent corporate practices. (RELATED: GOP Senators Chastise Conservative Justices In The Wake Of Leak)
“If a corporation put these kind of statements in their quarterly filings, they would be seen to be purposefully misleading and would be deemed fraud. So I think all their statements should be looked at very, very carefully,” she told CNN’s Jake Tapper on Sunday. “I think they misled the Senate with the intention of getting their confirmation vote with the intention of overruling Roe.”
“I’m very concerned these justices have crossed a line.”@SenGillibrand tells @jaketapper that conservative Supreme Court justices misled the Senate about Roe v. Wade during their confirmation hearings. @CNNSOTU #CNNSOTU pic.twitter.com/k7PBUmNXC4
— CNN (@CNN) May 8, 2022
Washington Rep. Pramila Jayapal, the chairwoman of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, told MSNBC’s Jose Diaz-Balart that the leaked opinion is an “outrage” during a May 4 television appearance.
“It really undermines and delegitimizes the Supreme Court as a a body that can make decisions that are not just purely political, and Supreme Court Justices that, frankly, lied under oath when they were testifying to Congress on this question,” she said.
Left-wing protesters targeted the conservative justices almost immediately after Alito’s draft was leaked, with the author forced to cancel a lecture appearance and reportedly moved to a safe house. Ruth Sent Us, a left-wing group, released a Google map with the home addresses of all six Republican-appointed justices, although a message on its website reveals that Google took down the map “due to a violation of our Terms of Service and/or policies.”