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Barrett nomination for Supreme Court brings reaction in county

September 27, 2020 News Extra

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President Donald Trump walks with Judge Amy Coney Barrett to a news conference to announce Barrett as his nominee to the Supreme Court on Saturday.

The reaction to President Donald Trump's nomination of Amy Coney Barrett to the U.S. Supreme Court on Saturday seemed to fall along party lines.

Butler County and Pennsylvania Republicans collectively gave an enthusiastic thumbs up. Democrats, not so much.

“She is a terrific selection,” said attorney Tom King, of the firm Dillon McCandless King Coulter & Graham in Butler. He also serves as general counsel of the Pennsylvania Republican Party.

“She graduated No. 1 in her law school class,” King said. “She was voted the outstanding professor at Notre Dame Law School three times and she serves on the United States Circuit Court sitting in Chicago.

“She is the mother of seven children. She's squeaky clean, and a terrific choice. She will be on the Supreme Court for a long time.

Catherine Lalonde, chairman of the county Democratic Committee, said she was worried about Barrett's conservative views, and concerned whether the nominee could separate her personal beliefs from her rulings.

“But the main issue is really the hypocrisy of the Republican Party,” Lalonde said, “having denied even hearing from Merrick Garland, who was quite moderate. It's just bold-faced hypocrisy.”

She contended Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and his fellow Republicans were being hypocritical after halting then-President Barack Obama's nomination of Garland to the court, citing the proximity to the 2016 presidential election.

If confirmed by the Senate, Barrett would take over the seat of former Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, 87, who died Sept. 18 from complications of metastatic pancreatic cancer.

Read more in Monday's Butler Eagle.

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