Donald Trump plans to nominate Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court on Saturday. The judge is a favourite of social conservatives who, if confirmed, will be the youngest justice on the court and could reshape the nation’s laws for decades.
CNN, CBS and PBS reported Barrett as Trump’s pick on Friday. Barrett was widely seen as the front-runner to fill the seat that opened when Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg died on September 18, and she was on the short list to replace Justice Anthony Kennedy in 2018. That seat ultimately went to now-Justice Brett Kavanaugh.
Barrett, 48, has been a judge on the US Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit – which covers cases in Indiana, Illinois and Wisconsin – since 2017.
She taught for 15 years at Notre Dame Law School in Indiana, and before that, clerked for the late Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia.
Civil and human rights groups strongly opposed Barrett’s nomination to her current court seat over her views on a range of issues.
During her 2017 Senate confirmation, 17 women’s rights groups wrote to committee members urging them to oppose Barrett for her record of having “expressly opposed reproductive and women’s rights.” They cited a 2003 article by Barrett in which she refers to Roe v. Wade, the landmark Supreme Court decision ensuring women’s access to abortion, as an “erroneous decision.” Their letter also notes that Barrett signed a public “statement of protest” against the Affordable Care Act’s birth control benefit, referring to the policy as an “assault on religious liberty.”
More than two dozen LGBTQ rights groups raised concerns about Barrett wavering on the idea of landmark LGBTQ rights decisions qualifying as “superprecedents” ― decisions so important they should not be overturned. They also note she took a speaking fee from the Alliance Defending Freedom, a nonprofit that has defended forced sterilisation for transgender people and been dubbed a hate group by the Southern...