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September 25, 2020

Rep. Pressley, Pro-Choice Caucus Leaders Urge Senate to Abstain from a Vote on Supreme Court Nominee Until After Next President is Installed

Text of Letter (PDF)

WASHINGTON – Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley (MA-07), along with Congressional Pro-Choice Caucus co-chairs U.S. Reps. Reps. Barbara Lee (CA-13) and Diana DeGette (CO-01) and eight colleagues, sent a letter today to Senate leaders urging them to abstain from voting on any Supreme Court nominee to replace the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg until after the next President is sworn into office.

“Justice Ginsburg’s passing creates a vacancy on the Supreme Court at a time when the health of our communities and our fundamental rights are under tremendous pressure,” the lawmakers wrote. “Just days before her death, Justice Ginsburg made a request, ‘My most fervent wish is that I will not be replaced until a new president is installed.’ As leaders of the Pro-Choice Caucus, we urge our colleagues in the Senate to honor Justice Ginsburg’s final wish and legacy.”

In the letter sent to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY), Judiciary Chairman Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and Judiciary Ranking Member Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), the lawmakers noted the president’s stated desire to pack the Supreme Court with justices opposed to reproductive rights.

“President Trump has vowed to nominate justices who are extremely hostile to reproductive health, rights, and justice, and he has already fulfilled that promise twice before,” the lawmakers wrote. “The confirmation of a third justice to the Supreme Court during the Trump Administration would further tip the balance of the court against our fundamental rights, including reproductive freedom, for generations.”

In addition to Reps. Pressley, Lee and DeGette, the letter was signed by Reps. Jackie Speier (D-CA), Ted Deutch (D-FL), Katherine Clark (D-MA, Julia Brownley (D-CA), Judy Chu (D-CA), Norma Torres (D-NY), Jan Schakowsky (D-IL), and Suzan DelBene (D-WA).

Congresswoman Pressley is Chair of the Abortion Rights and Access Task Force, a prominent taskforce within the House Pro-Choice Caucus, and has fought to protect comprehensive reproductive health care for all, including abortion care.

In May 2019, she introduced a resolution to reaffirm Congress’s support for the landmark Supreme Court decision, Roe v. Wade, and an individual’s constitutional right to exercise their reproductive autonomy. In September 2019, following reporting on new allegations of sexual misconduct committed by Associate Justice Brett Kavanaugh, she led a resolution calling for an impeachment inquiry into Kavanaugh. The Congresswoman has also led efforts in Congress to repeal the Hyde Amendment, language that prohibits federal Medicaid funds from being used to cover abortion care.

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