Justice Amy Coney Barrett, one of the newest justices appointed to the court, spoke recently on her experience on the high court and the scrutiny she has faced.
The Washington Examiner reported that Barrett spoke Monday at the 7th Circuit Judicial Conference in Wisconsin and was interviewed by Chief Judge Diane S. Sykes.
Sykes was on former President Donald Trump’s short list for appointment to the high court.
Speaking of the need for transparency and a “thick skin,” Barrett said: “I’ve been at it for a couple of years now. I’ve acquired a thick skin, and I think that’s what other figures have to do. I think that’s what all judges have to do.”
Barrett reminded listeners of the court’s role in preserving democracy. “Judicial philosophies are not the same as political parties.” Amy Coney Barrett said, emphasizing the distinction.
Barrett challenged the notion that the court is a secretive chamber of operation. Quite the opposite, she encouraged the public to scrutinize its work.
“To say the court’s reasoning is flawed is different from saying the court is acting in a partisan manner,” Barrett said, highlighting the difference between criticism of decisions and questioning the court’s impartiality.
“Justices and all judges are public figures and public criticism comes with the job,” Barrett added.
Barrett’s public comments follow reports that her colleague Justice Elena Kagan’s supported a new ethics code for the Supreme Court. However, Kagan noted there was no unanimity among the justices on how to proceed.
In an interview with the Wall Street Journal, Justice Alito stated that Congress lacks the authority to impose a code of ethics on the high court.
Mitch McConnell, Senate minority leader, was present for this discourse. He seemed pleased with Barrett’s proactive stance on the matter.
Offering his own perspective, McConnell shared some of his insights into the court’s operations. “This isn’t a political institution,” Mitch McConnell said, indicating his agreement with Barrett on the nature of the Supreme Court.
McConnell affirmed that the U.S. Supreme Court is not a group of “partisan hacks” but individuals committed to upholding the Constitution and the principles of justice and democracy.
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