Utah's Senators respond to Trump's nomination of Barrett for Supreme Court

Posted at 4:14 PM, Sep 26, 2020

SALT LAKE CITY — Both of Utah's U.S. Senators issued statements Saturday in response to President Donald Trump selecting Amy Coney Barrett as his nominee to become the next associate justice on the Supreme Court.

Sen. Mike Lee posted a statement on Twitter expressing strong support for Barrett, along with "#FillThe Seat":

"Judge Barrett is going to be a fantastic Supreme Court justice. I think she'll be a textualist and an originalist. She'll be devoted to the principle of constitutionally limited government. That's what President Trump promised his voters. It is what I promised my voters. And we are going to keep our promise to the voters who elected us."

Sen. Mitt Romney's statement praised Barrett's qualifications but also expressed a desire to personally evaluate the selection:

“Amy Coney Barrett is a highly-respected jurist with distinguished legal and academic credentials. My constitutional role to provide advice and consent on a Supreme Court nomination is one of my most serious responsibilities as a senator, and I believe our next justice must faithfully apply the law and our Constitution, impartially and regardless of policy preferences. I look forward to meeting with Judge Barrett, reviewing her record thoroughly, and carefully evaluating her qualifications.”

Barrett is the third person Trump has nominated to the Supreme Court during his presidency. Lee voted in favor of Neil Gorsuch in 2017 and Brett Kavanaugh in 2018. Romney was not a Senator at the time of Gorsuch's or Kavanaugh's nominations and subsequent Senate confirmations.

The Senate is expected to hold confirmation hearings starting Oct. 12, according to the Associated Press.

Trump’s announcement Saturday is eight days after the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.