Three powerful Republican senators who sit on the Judiciary Committee are demanding that Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) tone down and moderate his incendiary rhetoric regarding the draft Supreme Court opinion leaked last week. Even though the leaked draft is not the court’s final ruling, Democrats and abortion activists have been sounding alarms all week.
The Federalist published a letter sent from Sens. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN), Mike Lee (R-UT), and Ted Cruz (R-TX) on Thursday to Schumer. The trio accused him of slandering the Supreme Court justices and enabling protestors and others to engage in “authoritarian conduct.”
The GOP senators asked Schumer to actively condemn threats against members of the court. They also requested that he respect the independence of the judicial branch and cease intimidation tactics used for the purpose of trying to change the justices’ minds.
Schumer did not respond to media requests on Friday asking if he does in fact support the activities of groups like “Ruth Sent Us.” That group allegedly published the addresses of the justices’ private residences and has organized protests outside their homes. Schumer’s office also declined comment on whether the leak of the draft opinion exposes the court to “inappropriate external pressures.”
The Republican senators also criticized Schumer’s response to the report by Politico including the leaked draft. They said he immediately “attacked the Supreme Court justices from the floor of the Senate.” They cited his comments that the “conservative justices lied to the Senate, ripped up the Constitution, and defiled both precedent and the Supreme Court’s reputation.”
The letter said that justices appointed by Republican presidents have not lied about Roe v. Wade, as they acknowledged the case is “important precedent” during confirmation hearings. It went on to point out to Schumer that he certainly has supported other cases that overturned long-standing precedent when it was proper and necessary.
The letter goes on to reference Schumer’s threatening statements in March 2020 directed at Justices Brett Kavanaugh and Neil Gorsuch. Schumer said the pair would “pay the price” if they ruled in a pending case against the Senate leader’s position. The GOP senators described Schumer’s “inflammatory rhetoric” as being “toxic” to American democracy.
The senators closed their letter by demanding that Schumer make it very clear to America that threats and intimidation of the Supreme Court is “abhorrent.”