“The View” co-hosts Sara Haines and Alyssa Farah Griffin defended Supreme Court Associate Justice Amy Coney Barrett against calls for her to recuse herself from a case because of her Catholic faith.
Barrett is facing calls to recuse herself from a case revolving around web designer Lorie Smith’s refusal to design wedding websites for same-sex couples due to her religious beliefs. The Monday panel was divided on whether Barrett, a devout Catholic, should recuse herself due to her faith.
Griffin said the public needs to trust the “impartiality” of the justice system, especially given that the majority of the justices are Catholic. Haines agreed, arguing that the justices are required to set their beliefs aside when it comes to deciding on legal cases.
“I think you do have to either trust the impartiality of the system or not, though, is the problem,” Griffin said. “The majority of the court is Catholic, so you can single her out because of this association, but when we chose judges, like you’re [Sunny Hostin] Catholic, I would trust you to be able to argue a case revolving Catholic faith, that is what they’re expected to do so I think it’s kind of important that we trust the process.”
“I’m an avid LGBTQ ally and supporter and I believe in all of that, but I don’t think she should recuse herself for that very reason,” Haines said. “This is not a religious opinion, and Sunny would know this best when you write these opinions. They’re pages long and in the general public, we hear the results and how they got there. It’s kind of like a math problem, they have to cite and source every single part of what they do and judges everyday go to work and have to set aside their personal beliefs, so despite maybe not liking where she gets her legal philosophy, I don’t think it necessarily is immersed in just her religious belief.”
The other three co-hosts—Ana Navarro, Joy Behar and Hostin—argued that Barrett’s faith interferes in how she decides cases. Hostin said Barrett’s did not disclose her involvement with the religious group, People of Praise, during her confirmation hearing in 2020 and said the group removed photographs of her from its website. (RELATED: Joy Behar: ‘Do Not Understand The Reality Of What Happens When You Have Sex)
Behar accused Barrett of prejudice toward same-sex couples, citing her service on the board of a Catholic school that denied admission for children with same-sex parents.
“She’s prejudiced, obviously, against gay marriage and gay people, it seems to me,” Behar said.
Navarro said the court does not separate church and state in their rulings and that the justices are not trustworthy. She said she does not trust Associate Justice Clarence Thomas to recuse himself from cases revolving around the Capitol riot in connection to his wife, Ginni, and her text messages.
Hostin said recusal in the court is a common occurrence, to which Navarro said there needs to be more precise guidelines. Behar then cited the Washington Post who reported that Barrett served as a “handmaid,” referring to a high ranking woman, in the People’s Of Praise group.