The fight over the Supreme Court spilled over on the Senate floor Thursday, with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer accusing each other of lying.
The dueling remarks from the Senate leaders came after the Senate Judiciary Committee voted to advance Judge Amy Coney Barrett’s Supreme Court nomination, even as Democrats boycotted the meeting in an act of protest against the confirmation process.
After the vote on Barrett, McConnell accused Schumer of “lashing out in random ways.”
“Day after day, our colleague from New York performs the same angry speech with the same falsehoods,” the Kentucky Republican said. “I’m sorry that he feels the need to constantly say things that are false.”
Schumer retorted that McConnell “has defiled the Senate as an institution more than any person in this generation and many generations” and accused Republicans of building a “house of lies.”
“We have the culmination of this Republican majority’s systemic erosion of rules and norms in the pursuit of raw political power,” the New York Democrat said.
The Senate leaders’ insults come as the upper chamber is set to hold a final confirmation vote Monday on Barrett’s nomination to the Supreme Court. Senate Democrats are accusing Republicans of hypocrisy for confirming Barrett so close to the Nov. 3 election, after McConnell blocked former President Barack Obama’s nominee to the Supreme Court Merrick Garland in 2016. But Republicans argue the situation is different this time because the White House and Senate are controlled by the same party.
“Amy Coney Barrett is not the most political appointment ever to the Supreme Court by any objective standard,” McConnell said. “So these are not really arguments. They are just kind of angry noises.”
Schumer responded that Republicans “live by the rule of because we can, they completely ignore the question of whether they should — morality principles, value, consistency, all out the window.”
The GOP-controlled Senate is expected to confirm Barrett on Monday evening. While Democrats can’t stop the nomination, they have been forcing a series of procedural votes on the floor as part of their opposition to the process.