Sen. Chris CoonsChristopher (Chris) Andrew CoonsSunday shows preview: Coronavirus cases surge in the Midwest; Trump hits campaign trail after COVID-19 Key moments from Barrett’s marathon question-and-answer session Five takeaways from Barrett’s Supreme Court grilling MORE (D-Del.) said on Sunday he was open to expanding the number of justices that sit on the Supreme Court should Democratic nominee Joe BidenJoe BidenConservatives seize on New York Post story to push Section 230 reform Trump wishes Harris ‘the best’ after aide tests positive for COVID-19 Pennsylvania rejects 372K mail-in ballot applications following primary confusion: report MORE be elected president.
“Like Joe Biden, I’m not a fan of expanding the court but we have a few weeks here to see whether there are four Republicans who will step back from this precipice,” Coons told CNN’s Jake TapperJacob (Jake) Paul TapperGOP congressman condemns Trump-promoted theory that Bin Laden killing was a hoax McConnell: Democrats ‘refuse to give a straight answer’ on packing Supreme Court Fauci tensions with Trump escalate over campaign ad MORE on “State of the Union.”
Coons argued that President TrumpDonald John TrumpLatest Mnuchin-Pelosi call produces ‘encouraging news on testing’ for stimulus package China warns it will detain American nationals following DOJ prosecution of Chinese scholars: report Musician John Fogerty issues cease and desist over Trump use of ‘Fortunate Son’ MORE was pushing the nomination of Judge Amy Coney BarrettAmy Coney BarrettWashington flooded with Women’s March protesters ahead of Barrett confirmation vote Appeals court upholds Kentucky abortion law requiring clinics to have transfer agreements with hospitals Liberals should embrace Trump’s Supreme Court nominee MORE through to overturn the Affordable Care Act in the midst of a pandemic, a common criticism from Democrats throughout the COVID-19 crisis.
Coons characterized the focus on Biden’s intentions with the Supreme Court as a distraction, echoing a sentiment by Biden when asked if he would be in favor of allowing more than nine justices on the high court.
“[Republicans are] doing this to get someone on the court just in time, a week after the election, to take away critical health care protections from a majority of Americans, we need to focus on that,” Coons said. “And then if we happen to be in the fact pattern where we have a President Biden who will have to look at what the right steps are to rebalance our federal judiciary.”
The Senate Judiciary Committee is expected to vote on Barrett’s nomination this week, with the full chamber likely to approve her confirmation before Election Day.
Biden has spent weeks avoiding answering the question of whether he would support an expanded court. During a town hall on Thursday, Biden said he would leave the door open to the possibility.