"As to the hearing room, I doubt if there's any room in the country that's been given more attention and detail to make sure it's CDC compliant," Senate Judiciary Chairman Lindsey Graham said at the outset of Monday's confirmation hearing for Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett. And by all means it seems like they succeeded. For instance, all the Senate aides kept their masks on, as well as Barrett, who kept hers on all day, save when she delivered her opening statement.
Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ) wanted to submit a formal letter requesting better COVID protections for this week's hearings. Here's why we're laughing about that one.
Washington, DC hypocrisy. @SenBooker asks to submit a formal letter appealing for greater Covid 19 protections for the Senate confirmation hearings of ACB - Senator Booker makes his appeal while NOT wearing a mask.— Richard Grenell (@RichardGrenell) October 12, 2020
And even though she was in the same building, vice presidential nominee Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA) didn't make the trek to the hearing room because, according to the senator, it would put her at risk.
In response to the allegations from Democratic senators about how unsafe today's hearing was, Graham introduced for the record a letter from the Architect of the Capitol showing that the hearing room for Barrett is CDC compliant. Sen. Kennedy asked him what exactly he meant by "compliant" and Graham emphasized that meant that the room was set up "to be as safe as possible."
He also refused to give in to demands to get tested. As he explained, he got tested just last week and he's not going to be told "when to be tested by political opponents." There's no need for him to get tested again, he said, because he "feels fine."