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Opinion: Amy Coney Barrett's alarming non-answers

October 14, 2020. Summarized by summa-bot.

Elliot Williams writes that Judge Amy Coney Barrett has taken the art of giving non-answer answers to a new low this week on a matter that affects us all: the stability and security of our elections.

For instance, in response to New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker, Barrett refused to answer the straightforward question of whether every American President "should make a commitment -- unequivocally and resolutely -- to the peaceful transfer of power. " She called the issue a "political controversy" and made an empty statement about how "one of the beauties of America" is that we haven't had "the situations that have arisen in so many other countries. "

Yes, in response to a basic question about whether a president ought to respect the authority of his successor, the best answer a preeminent legal expert could give amounted to ducking the question and saying in effect, "well, at least we're not an unstable developing country. "

When asked Tuesday by Ranking Member California Sen. Dianne Feinstein and Wednesday by Illinois Sen. Dick Durbin if the Constitution or federal law gives the President the authority to delay an election unilaterally, she also refused to answer clearly and definitively.

It would not have been hard for Barrett to show some distance from the President by restating uncontested points about the law -- particularly to a nation hungry for peaceful and secure elections in the middle of a global pandemic.

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