NEWARK, N.J. – U.S. Senator Bob Menendez released the following statement in response to President Trump’s announcement that he will nominate Judge Amy Coney Barrett to fill the Supreme Court Justice vacancy left by the passing this week of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg: 

“The United States passed another grim milestone this week as the 200,000thAmerican died from the coronavirus. Tonight, across the country, families sit at their dinner tables wondering how they’re going to pay next month’s bills with too many facing eviction and foreclosure. State and local government coffers are running dry, and small businesses are shutting their doors – many for good.   

“And while President Trump and Mitch McConnell won’t lift a finger to pull our nation out of this unprecedented, deadly crisis, tonight, they’ve made clear they’ll be working overtime -- to ram through a Supreme Court nominee and fulfill their dream of killing the ACA. To them, this nominee puts them within reach of tearing health care coverage and protections for pre-existing conditions from millions of Americans. 

“This is nothing less than a cynical power grab in the midst of an election in which they fear that the will of the American people can ultimately end their reign.  And this nominee is nothing more than a knowing pawn in their scheme.

“There is too much at stake, not only for important issues like health care, reproductive rights, worker and immigrant rights, voting rights and climate change, but also for the legitimacy of the Supreme Court and the strength of our democracy.  

“The American people deserve – and rightly expect – a voice in this process.  They must speak up with their voices and their votes.”