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Recognition of the Minority Leader

Floor Speech

Date: Oct. 24, 2020
Location: Washington, DC

I came here from a State like Indiana, where serving in our State legislature and running a business for 37 years, we seemed to get things done. Even though we were divided, of course, like most legislative bodies are, we came together and did things that made a difference for our constituents.

In the time before the impeachment saga came along, COVID, and civil unrest, I thought many of us were putting our shoulders to the grindstone--and I am on committees like Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions--wanting to weigh in on talking about some of things the Democrats have brought up about healthcare. And, to me, again, I think it brings in front of us differences in approach, certainly.

I am a believer that rather than trying to get government even more involved in certain things, that we might look at what actually works in the real world and works in many States, including healthcare, which I agree is probably the No. 1 issue we face in the country. It was the No. 1 issue when I was running a business

I think there is so much commonality, in the sense that we have a broken healthcare system. We sometimes, as conservatives, are slow to maneuver and may not be interested in doing things that need to be done, but I think there is a time and a place for that. I was pleased to see, I think, that 70 or 80 Senators weighed in on trying to fix healthcare. But what interrupted that progress was several months of an impeachment saga that proved to go nowhere, and then we have been confronted with the biggest health crisis, certainly, in a century-- other issues.

But, in this case, I think, to me, trying to cut to the chase, this is clearly a sequence of maneuvers that is trying to interject in a process of getting one of the most qualified judges across the finish line to become a Supreme Court Justice.

I think the American people are watching, too. They see what goes on here. They see that, year after year, we seem not to deliver results. When it comes to stuff that should be simple--when it is clear, based upon the credentials, especially, of someone like Amy Coney Barrett, who comes from my State, who has done such an outstanding job as an appellate judge, has impeccable credentials, and to where now this is being litigated not on the merits of who she is and how she will handle herself as a Supreme Court Justice--it has gotten so partisan. I think that really does turn people off.

I think this is more a sequence that maybe we are both guilty of, to where we do not roll up our sleeves and get to the heart of the matter. I was happy to be the first Republican to come across and acknowledge that climate is an issue. I formed the Climate Caucus and got six other Republicans to do it. I think we have to be engaged in the key issues of the day. Again, as I said earlier, we sometimes are slow to come to the discussion, but in the time that I am going to spend here, I would hope that we do legislation in the time that is there to do it and not try to interject it into a process like this.

I am so happy that we have this in a situation where we are going to get her voted in on Monday, and, in the meantime, I think that any of the attempts that are made by the other side to belabor the point just shows the American public what is wrong with this institution.

So, that being said, I do think that she is a qualified nominee to the Supreme Court.


Mr. BRAUN. Mr. President, reserving the right object, as I said earlier, the Senate is currently considering the nomination of a highly qualified nominee to be an Associate of the Supreme Court. This request is another procedural move just to belabor the process.

They voted to adjourn until after the election four times this week, so, obviously, this bill, even though it may have merits that we need to discuss, should not be done in this format.

Continuing to consider this highly qualified nominee to the Supreme Court is the utmost, most important thing that we should do here.