An emotional Judge Amy Coney Barrett said Tuesday that her family has been hurt by “cruel” comments from anti-Trump opponents who derided her adoption of two children from Haiti.
During the tail end of the first day of questions at her confirmation hearing, she was asked to respond to Boston University Professor Ibram X. Kendi, who talking about the judge’s nomination said “some White colonizers ‘adopted’ Black children.”
He went on to say people were “using them as props.”
Judge Barrett said knowing those kinds of attacks were coming made her and her husband have to think hard before pursuing the high court nomination.
She said those attacks “are not only hurtful to me, but are hurtful to my children, who are my children who we love, who we brought home and made part of our family.”
Sen. John Kennedy, who gave her the chance to respond, called the professor a “butthead” and said the judge shouldn’t have had to endure that.
He said he waited until her children, most of whom had sat through much of the proceedings this week, were gone from the room so they didn’t have to hear the exchange.
Earlier in the day Judge Barrett talked about the “distinct” choices to have a large, interracial family — she has seven children, including the two adopted from Haiti — and to have a law career.
“We knew our lives would be combed over for any negative detail, we knew our faith would be caricatured, our family would be attacked, and sop we had to decide whether those difficulties would be worth it. Because what sane person would go through that if there was not a benefit on the other side?” she said. “The benefit is that I am committed to the rule of law and the role of the Supreme Court and dispensing equal justice for all.”
She concluded: “I’m not the only person who could do this job, but I was asked, and it would be difficult for anyone, so why should I say someone else should do the difficulty if the difficulty is the only reason to say no. I should serve my country. And my family is all in on that because they share my belief in the rule of law.”