Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) was stared down on Thursday by Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts after she asked an absurd partisan question that attacked Roberts’ character.
Warren, a far-left Democrat presidential candidate, asked in her question: “At a time when large majorities of Americans have lost faith in government, does the fact that the chief justice is presiding over an impeachment trial in which Republican senators have thus far refused to allow witnesses or evidence contribute to the loss of legitimacy of the chief justice, the supreme court, and the constitution?”
John Roberts was NOT happy with @EWarren's nasty question about whether the legitimacy of SCOTUS (and Roberts himself) would be sullied if there are no witnesses in the Senate trial pic.twitter.com/60fbiME3Db
— Curtis Houck (@CurtisHouck) January 30, 2020
The question was so absurd that even House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, who is serving as one of the Democrats’ impeachment managers, pushed back on the question and defended Roberts.
“Senator, I would not say that it contributes to a loss of confidence in the chief justice,” Schiff said. “I think the chief justice has presided admirably.”
Reporter Heather Monahan noted that Roberts glared at Warren for approximately five seconds after her question.
— Heather Monahan (@HeatherMonahan_) January 30, 2020
The reaction online from those who were providing serious analysis of the trial was overwhelmingly negative as only hyper-partisans cheered her remarks.
The Washington Post’s Mike DeBonis tweeted: “Pretty universal bewilderment in and around the chamber as to what point Sen. Warren was trying to make by her question about the trial contributing to a ‘loss of legitimacy’ for Roberts/SCOTUS. Schiff wanted nothing to do with it. As@pkcapitol notes, the seeming attack on Roberts came a day ahead of a potential tie vote where Dems have been courting Roberts to intervene. Pelosi very solicitous today; D sens uniformly respectful.”
As @pkcapitol notes, the seeming attack on Roberts came a day ahead of a potential tie vote where Dems have been courting Roberts to intervene. Pelosi very solicitous today; D sens uniformly respectful.
— Mike DeBonis (@mikedebonis) January 30, 2020
Attorney and Fox 5 political analyst Mike Sacks wrote: “Pretty sure Warren’s old boss Justice Elena Kagan ain’t happy about that stunt.”
K: What have done?
W: What do you mean?
K: He was gonna vote to release Trump’s taxes.
W: That Q was FTW!
K: I *had* him. You pushed him away.
W: Whatevever. I’m gonna pack the court. Make you de facto Chief!
K: We wish.
— Mike Sacks (@MikeSacksEsq) January 30, 2020
Another commentator added: “The fact that Senator Warren submitted this question, and the fact that Chief Justice Roberts read it unflinchingly, highlights how well and dutifully he executes his office, and how poorly and cynically she executes hers.”
Trump critic Benjamin Wittes agreed, writing: “I agree with this. The question reflects badly on Warren. The exchange, however, reflects well on Schiff—as well as on Roberts.”
I agree with this. The question reflects badly on Warren. The exchange, however, reflects well on Schiff—as well as on Roberts. https://t.co/whvFp76ren
— Benjamin Wittes (@benjaminwittes) January 30, 2020
NewsBusters Managing Editor Curtis Houck highlighted a clip of even leftist CNN hitting Warren for her remarks, in which the network said that her question was not “playing fair.”
Houck wrote, “Major yikes for @EWarren on @CNN just now as panel led by Erin Burnett universally condemned her nasty question about the legitimacy of the Supreme Court and Chief Justice John Roberts being sullied if the impeachment trial ends without witnesses.”
One CNN analyst featured in the clip said, “To use him in that way didn’t well and the real question is, what will his role otherwise be? Because we shouldn’t put him in that kind of a position.”
CNN contributor Scott Jennings added: “I thought that was ridiculous, honestly. To hector and pressure of the Chief Justice of the United States with that political question, that was a question written by someone who’s running for president who doesn’t know any other way except to sort of be rather vicious in the the way she raising she was raising the specter of his illegitimacy.”
Video: Major yikes for @EWarren on @CNN just now as panel led by Erin Burnett universally condemned her nasty question about the legitimacy of the Supreme Court and Chief Justice John Roberts being sullied if the impeachment trial ends without witnesses pic.twitter.com/Noj9QnOQ4I
— Curtis Houck (@CurtisHouck) January 31, 2020