Democratic senators are coming up with excuses to avoid the congressional hearings for Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett. The biggest excuse being the recent coronavirus outbreak in the White House and on Capitol Hill. In the past week, President Trump, first lady Melania Trump, Kayleigh McEnany, Hope Hicks, Kellyanne Conway and a few senators have tested positive for the disease. So, the Barrett hearings may need to go virtual. No big deal, right? I mean senators have already held several hearings via Zoom, having to get creative these past several months.
But suddenly Zoom isn't good enough. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and others argue that they can't possibly question Barrett virtually and that they must delay the proceedings. Sen. Tim Kaine (D-VA) added that he can't partake in virtual hearings because then he won't have his aides whispering notes in his ear. (Really).
Meanwhile, Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI), who is diagnosed with COVID-19, said he's going to do whatever it takes to make that vote for Barrett. Even if that requires wearing a "moonsuit."
"If we have to go in and vote, I've already told leadership I’ll go in a moon suit," Johnson told 630 KHOW during a radio interview. "We think this is pretty important."
The COVID-19 outbreak on Capitol Hill shouldn't cause a delay on the hearings, he argued, because they've "learned to conduct the business of the Senate over the internet."
For Schumer to suddenly be concerned about virtual hearings make him guilty of "selective ignorance," Johnson added.
Sen. Thom Tillis (R-NC), who also recently tested positive for COVID, said on Fox News on Tuesday that it's pretty rich for Schumer to demand everyone show up in person for the hearings, when he and his fellow Democrats "won’t even go meet with the candidate."
Although he's tested positive, Sen. Johnson says he feels "perfectly normal" and "does not have any symptoms whatsoever." The senator said he's been very cautious and doesn't know where exactly he was exposed to the virus.
"We are expecting way too much perfection in the midst of a highly contagious disease here," Johnson said.
"Most people who get COVID are going to be just fine," he explained, noting that most of the people he knows who have it have had mild symptoms.
But that doesn't mean he's not taking this pandemic seriously. He urged listeners to "be careful, don't go into crowded taverns or bars." And, he added, wear your mask indoors.