confirmation bias

This morning I received this email message from Senator Pat Toomey:

I Will Vote to Confirm Judge Barrett

This week, I had the pleasure to meet with Judge Amy Coney Barrett. Our meeting, along with her record and recent confirmation hearing, affirmed for me that Judge Barrett clearly has the intellect, experience, character, and judicial philosophy needed to be an outstanding Supreme Court justice.

Importantly, Judge Barrett reiterated to me her strong belief that the proper role of a judge is to apply the law, including the U.S. Constitution, as written, and not to serve as an unelected super legislator who imposes one’s preferred policy outcomes.

Given Judge Barrett’s stellar record and credentials, her nomination is deserving of overwhelming bipartisan support. It is unfortunate that most Democratic senators rejected her nomination from the start and even refused to meet with her. Nonetheless, I look forward to supporting Judge Barrett’s successful confirmation.

Read more about my decision in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

I replied:

Confirmation Bias

I received your message this morning that you intend to vote to confirm Amy Coney Barrett to the US Supreme Court.

Shame on you.

[In an earlier message] You claim to care for the will of the voters, who indirectly determine the Supreme Court by electing the President, who nominates justices, and the Senate, who confirms them. For this exact reason, you resisted reviewing Garland’s nomiation for eight *months*.

You are now ram-rodding this nominee through a hasty confirmation process, knowing full well that the Republican party could lose both the Presidential and the Senate elections in eight *days*. Indeed, it is only by accident of the six-year election cycle of Senators across 50 states that the Republican party retained control over the Senate in 2018; you surely witnessed how the party lost the House two years ago.

As for your praise of Barrett’s orignalist views, judicial activism has an important role in our history: Brown v. Board of Education. Roe v. Wade. Do you hope that the Supreme Court will review and overturn these monumental precendents, or that the court should not interpret the Constitution in light of any societal changes since the 18th century?

If you truly believed in listening to the citizens of our nation as well as in the strength of your position, you would wait until after the election. What is your hurry, sir? Surely you recognize this process is hasty. Why the big rush? I welcome a sincere answer.

Our country is going to pay the price for your planned malfeasance. I hope you see the error of this path.

May God have mercy on your soul.

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