Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer told reporters Tuesday that he has had a "serious" conversation with Sen. Dianne Feinstein after the California Democrat faced intense backlash over the cordiality she extended to Chairman Lindsey Graham after the confirmation hearings for Judge Amy Coney Barrett.
Feinstein did the unthinkable: she hugged Graham and thanked him for a job well done: "This has been one of the best set of hearings that I've participated in," she told the South Carolina Republican.
A mask-free embrace between Feinstein and Graham to cap things off.— Sahil Kapur (@sahilkapur) October 15, 2020
And the Amy Coney Barrett hearings are over. pic.twitter.com/3gJcpWpi5Z
And for that, progressives want her out.
"[I]t's time for Sen. Feinstein to step down" Brian Fallon, the executive director of the progressive group Demand Justice, told the Associated Press, adding that if she doesn't, "her colleagues need to intervene."
Ilyse Hogue, president of NARAL Pro-Choice America, said the country “deserve[s] leadership that underscores how unprecedented, shameful, and wrong this process is.”
She continued: “The Ranking Member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Senator Dianne Feinstein, failed to make this clear and in fact offered an appearance of credibility to the proceedings that is wildly out of step with the American people. As such, we believe the committee needs new leadership.”
This is not normal, these hearings are not legitimate. Dianne Feinstein gave credibility to the process when the majority of Americans have been clear that they want to choose the next president—and the next president should fill the vacancy. The committee needs new leadership. pic.twitter.com/Szaxb2S6Wh— NARAL (@NARAL) October 16, 2020
MoveOn said the Democratic Party needed “fierce leadership” instead.
“This was a moment for all Democrats to fight and instead [Senator Feinstein] cozied up with Lindsey Graham & undermined her own Democratic colleagues. She needs to step down from her role on the Judiciary Committee now. We need fierce leadership for the fights ahead,” the group tweeted.
This was a moment for all Democrats to fight and instead @SenFeinstein cozied up with Lindsey Graham & undermined her own Democratic colleagues. She needs to step down from her role on the Judiciary Committee now. We need fierce leadership for the fights ahead. https://t.co/XemuDOB0SE— MoveOn (@MoveOn) October 15, 2020
Schumer appears to have taken note.
“I’ve had a long and serious talk with Senator Feinstein, and that’s all I’m going to say about it right now,” he said Tuesday responding to a question about if he has plans to change up the Judiciary Committee, where Feinstein is ranking Democrat.
Q: "Do you plan to make any changes to the Judiciary Committee?"— CSPAN (@cspan) October 20, 2020
.@SenSchumer: "I’ve had a long and serious talk with Senator Feinstein. That’s all I’m going to say about it right now." pic.twitter.com/H2B3BR16Pn