Amy Coney Barrett was officially sworn in as a Supreme Court justice on Monday, just over a week before Election Day, officially creating a 6-3 conservative majority on the court that will be in place long after the results of the 2020 election are decided.
The mood may have been light at Barrett’s confirmation ceremony at the White House (where, at least, face coverings were required), but many of those watching the proceedings were overwhelmed by the significance that Barrett’s appointment could hold for—among other issues—reproductive rights:
This happened: @SenWhitehouse followed up in writing with Amy Coney Barrett (SOP) and asked whether the Constitution allows for abortion to be a crime punishable by death and she declined to answer. !!!!! pic.twitter.com/L2T8tMl4uf
— ilyseh (@ilyseh) October 22, 2020
RBG: "It's her right to decide."
Amy Coney Barrett: "I can't pre-commit.."
Make no mistake: the right to a safe and legal abortion is in danger.
— Jeff Merkley (@JeffMerkley) October 23, 2020
While some encouraged everyone to rush out and stock up on Plan B in the event of reproductive health access rollbacks, others noted the impracticality of hoarding contraception (and thus making it harder to access for people who need it now):
don't make me tap the sign pic.twitter.com/vDjNMiix6M
— tiny bodega pumpkin (@HelloCVH) October 27, 2020
Counterpoint: Don’t get an iud w/o seriously thinking it through, especially if we’re going to lose healthcare and it may be difficult getting it removed. And don’t horde emergency contraceptive, especially if you’re already on BC, as you’re contributing to a shortage. https://t.co/bBa0UeDoqi
— Small Crimes (@JasMoneyRecords) October 27, 2020
Barrett’s relative lack of experience as a judge drew ire, with many noting the difficulty that a non-white woman would likely have ascending to the Supreme Court with a similar resume:
Fiction on every front:
* Two of those senators were appointed (Loeffler, McSally).
* Trump was not legitimately elected.
* Amy Coney Barrett is not highly qualified. https://t.co/KHgIAfdgxy
— Franklin Leonard (@franklinleonard) October 27, 2020
So wait. Amy Coney Barrett is being added to the Supreme Court DESPITE NEVER HAVING BEEN AN ACTUAL JUDGE? SHE HAS NEVER TRIED A CASE?
Girl, if you don’t apply for that job with no experience because clearly—
— Moneybagg Glow (@fairyglowmother) October 26, 2020
Others noted the speed with which Senate Republicans were able to install a conservative justice on the Supreme Court, especially relative to the time it has taken them to pass any measure of meaningful COVID-19 relief:
After confirming Barrett, McConnell adjourned the Senate until 11/9 with no COVID relief.
— Joshua Potash (@JoshuaPotash) October 27, 2020
They approved #AmyConeyBarrett but not COVID relief.
— Shane Claiborne (@ShaneClaiborne) October 27, 2020
They got RBG replaced in less than 2 months but we’ve been battling Covid for most of the year and we’re still waiting on a damn stimulus package. At what point do y’all realize we are not their priority?
— Ashley K. (@AshleyKSmalls) October 27, 2020
Many came together on Twitter to mourn the painful irony of Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s seat on the Supreme Court being filled by Barrett, whose politics differ from Ginsburg’s in almost every relevant way:
this quickie confirmation of i don’t even want to say her name is an absolutely horrifying and wildly hypocritical disgrace from a party that couldn’t possibly sink lower.
i am scared.
we are so sorry RBG.
please. vote. republicans. out.
— Ben Platt (@BenSPLATT) October 27, 2020
I hope RBG has haunting powers.
— Lisa Lucas (@likaluca) October 27, 2020