Missouri Sen. Josh Hawley announced late Wednesday that he intends to introduce a motion as soon as Thursday to censure Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer over his attempts to intimidate Supreme Court Justices Brett Kavanaugh and Neil Gorsuch.
“Tonight U.S. Senator Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) announced he will introduce a motion to censure U.S. Senator Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) for inciting violence against U.S. Supreme Court Justices,” his office announced in a statement.
“In a pro-abortion rally in front of the Supreme Court today, Senator Schumer threatened Justices by name saying, ‘I want to tell you, Gorsuch. I want to tell you, Kavanaugh. You have released the whirlwind, and you will pay the price. You won’t know what hit you if you go forward with these awful decisions.'”
I would call on Schumer to apologize, but we all know he has no shame. So tomorrow I will introduce a motion to censure Schumer for his pathetic attempt at intimidation of #SupremeCourt
— Josh Hawley (@HawleyMO) March 5, 2020
The announcement was made after Chief Justice John Roberts personally involved himself in the matter — which is a rarity — by issuing his own statement excoriating Schumer for his stunning breach of basic etiquette and behavior.
“This morning, Senator Schumer spoke at a rally in front of the Supreme Court while a case was being argued inside,” he said. “Senator Schumer referred to two Members of the Court by name and said he wanted to tell them that ‘You have released the whirlwind, and you will pay the price. You will not know what hit you if you go forward with these awful decisions.'”
“Justices know that criticism comes with the territory, but threatening statements of this sort from the highest levels of government are not only inappropriate, they are dangerous. All Members of the Court will continue to do their job, without fear or favor, from whatever quarter.”
NEW: Chief Justice Roberts chastises Schumer for “threatening” statements about Kavanaugh, Gorsuch. pic.twitter.com/jQWHJTfpks
— Greg Stohr (@GregStohr) March 4, 2020
In response to Roberts’ statement, Schumer’s office tried drawing a false equivalence between the clear-cut threats against Kavanaugh and Gorsuch issued by Schumer and the soft criticism against Supreme Court Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Sonia Sotomayor issued last week by President Donald Trump.
“For Justice Roberts to follow the right wing’s deliberate misinterpretation of what Sen. Schumer said, while remaining silent when President Trump attacked Justices Sotomayor and Ginsburg last week, shows Justice Roberts does not just call balls and strikes,” the senator’s spokesperson said in a statement.
Look at the president’s so-called “attack” below:
“Sotomayor accuses GOP appointed Justices of being biased in favor of Trump.” @IngrahamAngle @FoxNews This is a terrible thing to say. Trying to “shame” some into voting her way? She never criticized Justice Ginsberg when she called me a “faker”. Both should recuse themselves..
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 25, 2020
….on all Trump, or Trump related, matters! While “elections have consequences”, I only ask for fairness, especially when it comes to decisions made by the United States Supreme Court!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 25, 2020
It’s not clear how the president asking for “fairness” from Ginsburg and Sotomayor — both of whom have a sordid history of partisan behavior and rhetoric — is in any way, shape or form equivalent to Schumer blatantly threatening two justices.
Nor is it clear that Schumer’s excuses will save him this time, given as even some members of his own party have come out swinging against him.
In a statement, just-withdrawn Democrat presidential candidate Tom Steyer’s senior campaign adviser, Jimmy Williams, went so far as to suggest Schumer should step down:
Threatening a sitting Justice regardless of their politics is dangerous. What Schumer said is gross inappropriate and unacceptable. He should clarify his words immediately or step down from leadership. We must be better than this. https://t.co/kRKNH4y6tj
— jimmy williams (@Jimmyspolitics) March 4, 2020
Other notable leftists such as Laurence Tribe and Jonathan Turley joined the chorus as well.
These remarks by @SenSchumer were inexcusable. Chief Justice Roberts was right to call him on his comments. I hope the Senator, whom I’ve long admired and consider a friend, apologizes and takes back his implicit threat. It’s beneath him and his office. https://t.co/xbNnUeznRR
— Laurence Tribe (@tribelaw) March 4, 2020
Schumer’s threat to the Court that “you will pay the price” is a direct attack on the integrity of our courts. I criticized Trump for his reckless comments about the courts. Where is the chorus of condemnation of Schumer? Schumer sounded more like a stalker than a statesman.
— Jonathan Turley (@JonathanTurley) March 4, 2020
But instead of backing down and at least apologizing, Schumer has apparently doubled down by tweeting a video depicting some of the speech he’d delivered at the pro-abortion rally Wednesday outside the Supreme Court.
The protest pertained to June Medical Services v. Russo, a current Supreme Court case involving Louisiana’s “Unsafe Abortion Protection Act.” Signed into law in 2014, it’s a common-sense bill “that requires doctors who provide abortions to have admitting privileges at a nearby hospital,” according to CBS News. That’s it.
To be clear, the clip he shared did not include his controversial threats.
SCOTUS just heard the 1st big case on a woman’s right to make her own health care decisions since Justices Kavanaugh & Gorsuch
It looks at 1 of 100s of draconian, anti-choice restrictions states tried to pass
We’re here to send a message: Not on our watch! pic.twitter.com/cdjCfe32wi
— Chuck Schumer (@SenSchumer) March 4, 2020
As of Thursday morning, the tweet boasted a quickly growing ratio.
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