Opinion | Ideas for the Hearings on Amy Coney Barrett

To the Editor:

When the Senate holds hearings on the confirmation of Judge Amy Coney Barrett, I hope she departs from the path taken by past conservative nominees and instead chooses to reveal truthfully her positions and intentions.

Too often, the G.O.P.’s judicial nominees have presented views that are less hard-edge than what they truly believe and have not been frank with the senators and American public. Why? They know the public would regard their views as far right of the mainstream.

If Judge Barrett opposes a woman’s right to choose to have an abortion, she should say so. If she opposes Obamacare, climate change regulations, reining in executive power and restricting gun purchases, she should say so.

If she believes she needn’t recuse herself should the Supreme Court hear a case of President Trump’s refusing to accept the election results, Judge Barrett should let us know now, before she’s allowed to serve on the Supreme Court.

Peter Ward
Cambridge, Mass.

To the Editor:

Regarding the Senate confirmation hearings for Amy Coney Barrett, now is the time for Kamala Harris to step forward. The other nine Democratic senators on the Judiciary Committee should cede their questioning time to her. As a former prosecutor, she is eminently qualified to put all relevant queries to Judge Barrett.

And while each Republican senator basks for a few moments in the sun of the conservative right by asking fawning questions that require no answers, Ms. Harris can put forth a single-voiced and therefore focused line of questions about such issues as health care, abortion and L.G.B.T.Q. rights.

Democratic senators, put your egos aside. Give your vice-presidential candidate, Ms. Harris, the stage.

Ned Gardner
Apex, N.C.

To the Editor:

A senator should ask: “Judge Barrett, you are a devout Catholic. In 2015, Pope Francis published an encyclical on the environment in which he wrote, ‘There is an urgent need to develop policies so that, in the next few years, the emission of carbon dioxide and other highly polluting gases can be drastically reduced, for example, substituting for fossil fuels and developing sources of renewable energy.’

“Do you agree with the leader of your church? Do you believe that the United States should take the lead in addressing climate change?”

Eric Lukingbeal
Granby, Conn.
The writer is a retired environmental lawyer.

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