POLITICS

Amy Coney Barrett Submits Additional Anti-Abortion Docs To Senate After Scrutiny

The Supreme Court nominee turned over more information "out of an abundance of caution" — but raised questions about what else she failed to disclose.

As part of a last-minute addition to documents she was required to submit for her nomination process, President Donald Trump’s Supreme Court nominee Judge Amy Coney Barrett revealed on Friday a 2013 newspaper ad she signed condemning the “infamous” Roe v. Wade decision that, the ad claimed, “killed 55 million unborn children.”

Disclosure of the ad was part of additional material she submitted to the Senate Judiciary Committee, which requires judicial nominees to fill out a questionnaire and provide published writings and statements. The documents followed her initial submission on Sept. 29.

In the Friday disclosure, Barrett also revealed that she spoke at two events held by anti-abortion student groups at Notre Dame University in 2013, where she was a law professor at the time. She did not reveal the content of her talks.

The ad, sponsored by a faculty group to which Barrett belonged, appeared in Notre Dame’s student newspaper, she noted in a letter to Judiciary Committee leaders released late Friday.

“In the 40 years since the Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade decision, over 55 million unborn children have been killed by abortions,” it read. “We ... renew our call for the unborn to be protected in law.”

Barrett submitted the new information revealing the ad and speeches following criticism from Democrats after a 2006 anti-abortion newspaper ad she signed, which she had not previously disclosed, resurfaced earlier this month. 

The supplemental materials were released just hours after CNN revealed that Barrett had failed to disclose her talks before the anti-abortion student groups. CNN also reported that video of one of the speeches was removed from YouTube by Notre Dame in 2014. 

Barrett’s nomination hearings begin Monday.

Barrett claimed in her letter Friday that she was releasing the “supplemental” information “out of an abundance of caution.” She insisted it “is not clear” that the new disclosures were required as part of the questionnaire. But she noted, “I have been made aware of some items you may have already seen” — so now she was providing them.

Barrett’s omissions raise the possibility that there may be more information she hasn’t disclosed. It’s not clear what kind of consequences she may face for not initially revealing the ads and talks.

Democratic members of the Senate Judiciary Committee wrote a letter to the Justice Department earlier this week demanding that officials determine whether Barrett has complied with full disclosure requirements.

Democrats pointed out that Barrett had earlier failed to reveal an open letter from 2006. That statement, signed by Barrett and others, blasted what it called the “barbaric legacy” of Roe v. Wade and “explicitly called for overturning” the decision.

“The failure to disclose the 2006 letter leads to additional questions about other potentially missing materials,” the Democrats wrote. “The omission also raises concerns that the process of collecting materials responsive to the [questionnaire], like the nomination process itself, has been rushed, for no legitimate reason.” 

Barrett hasn’t made any rulings about abortion as a federal appeals court judge, but her position is clear on Roe v. Wade, which gave American women the right to abortion nearly half a century ago.

Trump and Senate Republicans are rushing to get Barrett confirmed by the full Senate before the Nov. 3 election.

HuffPost

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