Klobuchar Contradicts Herself on Calls to Delay Barrett Hearings

October 4, 2020

Minnesota senator Amy Klobuchar (D.) contradicted herself Sunday on whether the Senate should delay hearings on Amy Coney Barrett's Supreme Court nomination in light of Republican senators on the Senate Judiciary Committee testing positive for COVID-19.

Klobuchar initially said Republicans are trying to "ram through" Barrett's nomination but said that she was "absolutely not" calling for the hearings to be delayed. She then reversed course again and said the hearings should be delayed because it would be "better for safety."

"I don't know why you would ram through the Supreme Court hearing, put people in danger because it would be within that two week period," Klobuchar told Fox News Sunday host Chris Wallace.

Klobuchar then said she was "absolutely" not calling for the hearings to be delayed after Wallace pointed out that the hearings can be held virtually.

"We believe you should have an in-person hearing. That doesn't mean the virtual option wouldn't be available," she said. Klobuchar then said the Senate should be focused on a COVID economic stimulus package rather than Barrett's hearings, which the senator said should be delayed because it is "better for safety."

"Wait until after the election. Better for safety, better for the country," she said.

Klobuchar's mixed messaging comes as Senate Democrats call on Senate Judiciary Committee chairman Lindsey Graham (R., S.C.) to delay Barrett's hearing, which is set to begin on Oct. 12.

"To proceed at this juncture with a hearing to consider Judge Barrett's nomination to the Supreme Court threatens the health and safety of all those who are called upon to do the work of this body," Sen. Dianne Feinstein (Calif.) and the other nine Democrats on the committee, including Klobuchar, wrote in a letter.