Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) on Monday lambasted Senate Democrats for making policy arguments about the Affordable Care Act during the Senate Judiciary Committee confirmation hearings for Judge Amy Coney Barrett's nomination to the Supreme Court.
"Let me observe, as Sherlock Holmes famously observed, that 'what speaks the loudest is the dog that didn't bark.' Which is, to date, of every Democrat who's spoken, we've heard virtually not a single word about Judge Barrett," Cruz said.
Accusing Democrats of engaging in "political rhetoric" against President Donald Trump and other Republicans on the Senate Judiciary Committee, Cruz asserted that his colleagues on the other side of the aisle are not discussing Barrett's credentials because they are "impeccable."
He noted that the American Bar Association, "which typically leans hard left and has a long pattern of favoring Democratic nominees over nominees appointed by Republican presidents, had no choice" but to give Barrett its highest rating.
Cruz dismantled Democratic talking points that this Supreme Court nomination is "illegitimate" based on the timing or the fact that it is an election year. He reviewed the history of 29 Supreme Court appointments that occurred during an election year, reminding Democrats that 19 appointments were made when the president and the Senate majority shared the same party and that 17 of those 19 nominees were confirmed, even during an election year.
He added that partisan complaints over which party was in control of the Senate at a given time miss the point of the Senate's constitutional function when there is a court vacancy.
"The framers of the Constitution deliberately set up a system of checks and balances so that nobody could become a Supreme Court nominee without both the president and the Senate," Cruz explained. "Each was designed to check the other. That system of checks and balances limits power ultimately and protects the voters. And indeed, the voters made a clear choice."
Cruz said that the previous statements by both Democrats and Republicans Monday morning demonstrated that the parties have "fundamentally different visions of the court, of what the Supreme Court is supposed to do, what its function is."
"Democratic senators view the court as a super-legislature, as a policymaking body, as a body that will decree outcomes to the American people," Cruz continued. "Now, that vision of the court is something found nowhere in the Constitution. And it's a curious way to want to run a country. Even if on any particular policy issue you might happen to agree with wherever a majority of the court is on any given day, who in their right mind would want the United States of America ruled by five unelected lawyers wearing black robes?"
"It's hard to think of a less democratic notion than unelected philosopher-kings with life tenure decreeing rules for 330 million Americans," he added. "That is not in fact the court's job. The court's job is to decide cases according to the law and to leave policymaking to the elected legislatures"
Cruz said policymaking is best left to elected representatives, like those in the Senate.
"If a rogue court implements policies you don't like," Cruz said, "you the American people have very limited ability to check them. If a rogue Congress implements policies you don't like, you have a direct ability to check us by throwing the bums out and voting them out and voting in new representatives."
Cruz castigated Democrats for making "policy arguments" over the Affordable Care Act instead of acknowledging Barrett's qualifications for the Supreme Court.
"Our Democratic colleagues simply want a promise from a judicial nominee that this nominee will work to implement their policy vision of health care," Cruz said. "That is not a judge's job. That is not the responsibility of a judge; in fact, making that promise would be violating the judicial oaths."
Cruz added that Democrats have made a "political decision" to make pre-existing conditions the "central issue" of this nomination.
"Every single member of the Senate agrees that pre-existing conditions can and should be protected. Period. The end," he said. "There it is, complete unanimity on this. Now, it so happens that there are a number of us on the Republican side that also want to see premiums go down. Obamacare has caused premiums to skyrocket, the average family's premiums have risen over $5,000 a year, millions of Americans can't afford health care because of the policy failures of Obamacare. Those questions should be resolved in this body. It's not a justice's job to do that, it's not a court's job to do that; it's the elected legislature's job to do that."
"Judge Barrett brings impeccable credentials, a judicial temperament, and a faithfulness to the law," Cruz continued. "That's what we should be looking for in Supreme Court justices. And if Democratic senators want to engage in policy arguments, they can do so here, not by filibustering every bill, as they have done over and over and over again. Whether it's pandemic relief or Obamacare relief to lower premiums and expand choices, today our Democratic colleagues filibuster everything and then complain nothing gets passed."
"This is the body that has to resolve those questions. This is also the body that, consistent with two centuries of precedent, can, should, and I believe will confirm Judge Barrett as Justice Barrett," he said.
Ted Cruz EMBARRASSES Dems, Points Out They Aren't Even Talking About ACB In the Hearing for Herwww.youtube.com