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Arizona political leaders react to Barrett’s Supreme Court confirmation

Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett meets with Sen. Jim Inhofe, R-Okla., Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2020, on Capitol Hill in Washington. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin, Pool)

PHOENIX – The U.S. Senate voted on Monday to confirm nominee Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court, and Arizona political leaders had mixed feelings about the appointment.

Last week, Republican Sen. Martha McSally said she was “a strong yes” when it came to confirming Barrett. Following the vote, McSally tweeted that she was looking forward to Barrett taking her seat on the high court.

“As only the fifth woman to serve on our nation’s highest court and the first with school-aged children, soon-to-be Justice Barrett is continuing her trend of shattering barriers for women and girls,” McSally said in a statement.

“Her ascent to the top of her field in a male-dominated profession is an inspiration to all Americans and proves once again that women deserve a seat at the table.”

On the other hand, Democratic Sen. Kyrsten Sinema said she would vote no on the 58-year-old’s nomination and followed through on that promise, sticking to party lines.

Democratic Senate candidate Mark Kelly, who previously called for the Supreme Court seat to be filled after the election, expressed his disappointment in McSally’s decision to vote in favor of the confirmation.

“Sen. McSally just jammed through a lifetime appointment to the Supreme Court who will vote to eliminate protections for Arizonans with pre-existing conditions, she did it instead of passing COVID relief to help Arizonans get through this crisis, and she did it days from an election in which 1.5 million Arizonans have already voted,” Kelly said in a statement.

Republican Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey called the Barrett’s appointment a “historic day” for the United States.

“Her qualifications are without question — as is her commitment to upholding the Constitution and rule of law,” Ducey said in a statement.

“I applaud the Senate for confirming Amy Coney Barrett, and I’m thankful to President Trump for nominating an individual who values America’s founding documents and will interpret the Constitution as written.”

Arizona Republican U.S. reps. Debbie Lesko and David Schweikert also expressed their excitement for the appointment.

Democratic Maricopa County Attorney candidate Julie Gunnigle said in a tweet thread that Barrett’s “extreme ideology will tip the scales of justice against women in this country.”

Arizona Democratic Party chairwoman Felecia Rotellini said in a statement that McSally’s vote indicates she put her political career over Arizonans’ health care access.

“Eight days out from an election in which millions have already voted, Martha McSally is helping Mitch McConnell and Donald Trump force through a lifetime appointment for a judge who will help them eliminate pre-existing condition coverage protections and restrict reproductive freedom,” Rotellini said.

The 52-48 vote by the Republican-controlled Senate solidifies President Donald Trump’s promise to confirm a justice ahead of the impending Nov. 3 presidential election.

Barrett will officially be sworn in Tuesday in a private ceremony by Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts. After that, she will be able to take part in the court’s work.

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