What was initially planned to be an analysis of experts from the American Bar Association, people who personally know Barrett and those who are worried about what her confirmation to the Supreme Court could express, became over 90 minutes of disputes by senators.
Their actions, which included originally only Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., showing up to the committee's first markup and making a motion to end the meeting because there are two minority members needed for a quorum, appear to fulfill a promise from Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., that Democrats "will not supply the quorum. Period," and that they will do everything they can to block Barrett's confirmation.
"Under the rules of this committee you cannot proceed with the business of the committee, even with a quorum present, unless there are two members of the minority present as well," Durbin told Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., at the start of the confirmation. "I want to take official note of the fact that I am the only member of the minority that is here."
Graham introduced the motion anyway and scheduled a vote on Barrett for 1 p.m. on Oct. 22 before other Democratic senators began to trickle in.
Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., then made a motion to indefinitely delay the vote on Barrett, which tipped off debate from multiple senators, including from Democrats and accusations of hypocrisy, fire on Barrett, fire of the process this close to the election and acts of revenge of Democrats warnings that Barrett might decide to overthrow the Affordable Care Act (ACA).
Blumenthal's motion eventually failed, but not after the hearing had essentially been delayed for two hours.
"I believe that this rush, sham process is a disservice to our committee," Blumenthal said. "There has never been a nomination in an election year after the month of July."
"This is a sham," Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn, added, before citing the fact that Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., barred Obama Supreme Court nominee Merrick Garland in 2016. "He said the American people should have a voice in this election, of their next Supreme Court justice."
While the Democrats were dancing on the head of a pin this time around because of the reaction to the questioning of Judge Barrett’s faith, Ms. Feinstein, in a generally confused interrogatory about abortion and gun control, still did her best to get the nominee to issue her personal opinions. Judge Barrett refused to take the bait.