On Thursday, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) rebuked his colleague, Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY), for telling two sitting members of the Supreme Court that they would “pay the price” if they were to rule conservatively on pending abortion cases.
Speaking on the Senate floor, McConnell said, “There is nothing to call this except a threat.”
“At the very best, his comments were astonishingly reckless and irresponsible,” McConnell said. “The minority leader of the United States Senate threatened two associate justices of the U.S. Supreme Court. Period.”
McConnell asked Schumer to ultimately “withdraw his comments and apologize.”
“No matter the intention, words carrying the apparent threat of violence can have horrific unintended violence,” McConnell later added.
.@senatemajldr McConnell criticizes Schumer for his threats against Gorsuch and Kavanaugh: The minority leader of the United States Senate threatened two associate justices of the U.S. Supreme Court, period! There’s no other way to interpret that. pic.twitter.com/hC0ZqtzEJx
— Julio Rosas (@Julio_Rosas11) March 5, 2020
McConnell was referring to Schumer’s fiery speech on Wednesday, in which he called out Supreme Court Justices Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh by name, warning them of the hell that will come if they do not side with Democrats on the abortion issue.
“I want to tell you, Gorsuch. I want to tell you, Kavanaugh. You have released the whirlwind and you will pay the price!” Schumer said. “You won’t know what hit you if you go forward with these awful decisions.”
Schumer, who has not apologized, later took the floor and only said that he chose the wrong words, blaming his incendiary language on his New York upbringing.
“Now I should not have used the words I used,” Schumer said. “They didn’t come out the way I intended to … I’m from Brooklyn. We speak in strong language.”
Other prominent members of the Senate body rebuked Schumer for his remarks and called on him to apologize.
“At best, it was an injection of partisan politics into the process that should be immune to these justices. At worst it was a threat targeting two sitting members of the Supreme Court,” said Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA).
As reported by The Daily Wire’s Ryan Saavedra, Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) announced on Wednesday that he would bring a motion to censure Schumer for his remarks, saying the minority leader “has no shame.”
“Now @chuckschumer is threatening Supreme Court Justices personally, to the point of implying their physical safety is endangered. Disgusting, shameful, and frankly, WEAK,” Hawley wrote on Twitter. “I would call on Schumer to apologize, but we all know he has no shame. So tomorrow I will introduce a motion to censure Schumer for his pathetic attempt at intimidation of #SupremeCourt.”
Both President Donald Trump and Chief Justice John Roberts have publicly rebuked Chuck Schumer for making the threat.
“Senator Schumer referred to two Members of the Court by name and said he wanted to tell them that ‘You have released the whirlwind, and you will pay the price. You will not know what hit you if you go forward with these awful decisions,'” Justice Roberts said in a statement. “Justices know that criticism comes with the territory, but threatening statements of this sort from the highest levels of government are not only inappropriate, they are dangerous. All Members of the Court will continue to do their job, without fear or favor, from whatever quarter.”
“Schumer has brought great danger to the steps of the United States Supreme Court!,” tweeted President Trump.