Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) apparently forgot the “no hugs” rule.
After inviting the wrath of the left for being too nice during Judge Amy Coney Barrett’s Supreme Court confirmation hearings, Feinstein received a stern rebuke from longtime colleague Chuck Schumer (D-NY) this week, raising questions about her future on the Senate Judiciary Committee, as the Washington Examiner reports.
“A long and serious talk”
Democrats have made no secret of their view that President Donald Trump’s nomination of Barrett is illegitimate and a grave threat to health care and abortion rights — and although they are likely powerless to do anything about it, some say that Feinstein failed to rise to the occasion in the Judiciary panel’s hearings on the SCOTUS hopeful last week.
The Senate’s oldest member incited a backlash when she hugged Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and remarked at the conclusion that the hearings were “one of the best…that I have participated in,” as the New York Post reported.
Liberal activists could not disagree more, with one group, Demand Justice, excoriating the top Democrat on the Senate Judiciary Committee for treating “the most egregious partisan power grab in the modern history of the Supreme Court” with “kid gloves,” as the Washington Examiner reported.
Sen. Schumer, for his part, said Tuesday that he had a “serious talk” with Feinstein.
“I’ve had a long and serious talk with Senator Feinstein. That’s all I’m going to say about it right now,” Schumer told reporters, according to The Washington Post.
The bottom line
At the end of the day, it’s not likely that Feinstein is going anywhere — and in her defense, it’s not clear what she might have done to change the outcome of Barrett’s hearings.
The near certainty of Barrett’s confirmation left Democrats to spend much of the hearings reciting campaign talking points, and notwithstanding the dissonance of Feinstein’s display of collegiality, few could say there was much ambiguity as to their messaging. Feinstein still led what could be described as borking as Democrats repeatedly framed Barrett as a political operative hired by Republicans to advance a nefarious agenda.
The California senator sounded satisfied with how things went on Friday.
“The Senate is structured so the majority had absolute control over this process,” Feinstein said in a statement, according to the New York Post. “When Republicans signaled they’d move ahead in the face of all objections, the only thing we could do was show this nominee would radically alter the court, and we accomplished that.”
Barrett, for her part, is on track to be confirmed as soon as Monday after a successful committee vote on Thursday, which Democrats boycotted, according to Fox News.