Roughly 2 years before the standard practices of the Supreme Court were thrown out the window by the leaking of a draft opinion concerning a major abortion case, the head Senate Democrat threatened the seated conservative justices that “you won’t know what hit you” if they issued a ruling on abortion in any manner he personally did not approve of.
“Inside the walls of this court, the Supreme Court is hearing arguments, as you know, for the first major abortion rights cases since Justice Kavanaugh and Justice Gorsuch came to the bench,” exclaimed Chuck Schumer as part of a pro-abortion right rally that took place in March of 2020, seemingly in reference to justices Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh.
“I want to tell you Gorsuch, I want to tell you Kavanaugh, you have released the whirlwind and you will pay the price. You won’t know what hit you if you go forward with these awful decisions,” screamed the now-Senate Majority Leader as he paced back and forth flailing his arms about.
After this recent leak, one Republican congressman seated on the House Judiciary Committee says that they see a connection between the two events.
“It’s speculation to a degree, but almost certainly this [leak] comes from the minority on the court to disrupt or somehow produce public pressure to alter the course of deliberations,” stated Dan Bishop (R-NC).
That comment of intimidation includes the specter of violence, he claimed.
“It is unquestionably true that there is an attempt to intimidate [justices], and whoever the actor or group that caused it, since they’re willing to intimidate I don’t think they’d [draw a line at] threats of violence. It’s very grave, when you have something like this that’s never occurred before in the history of the court. Since they’ll do things that are unprecedented, you don’t want to just sit back and see how far it will go,” he claimed.
In response, Schumer’s office claimed that his statements from 2020 were “a reference to the political price [Republicans] will pay for putting them on the court and a warning that the justices will unleash a major grassroots movement on the issue of reproductive rights against the decision.”
However, these remarks seemed to stand out quite a bit to Steve Scalise, one House Republican who can safely state that the unleashing of regular people can lead to horrible violence like when a Bernie Sanders-supporting gunman rushed forward and shot him as he played baseball. Back when it first happened, Scalise stated that these comments from Schumer were entirely “unhinged.”
🚨 UNHINGED → Schumer threatened conservative justices Kavanaugh & Gorsuch on the steps of the Supreme Court:
"You have released the whirlwind & you will pay the price. You won't know what hit you."
Enough. This rhetoric has dangerous consequences. Where's the media outrage? pic.twitter.com/SiGNHxG0iX
— Steve Scalise (@SteveScalise) March 4, 2020
“I’ve never heard of something like this [leak] in the Supreme Court in my life,” stated Bishop, who is also a lawyer. “The deliberation process has a lot of tradition around it. In order to maintain public trust and respect, it needs to remain sacrosanct that people don’t betray the process. I can’t imagine a more harmful act to the integrity of the court.”
Bishop also stated, “the Left constantly goes around talking about threats to our democracy, but they are willing to do anything to our democracy: They’re willing to pack the court, take over all power to run elections, the ‘ministry of truth’ being created in DHS… eliminate the filibuster, add states to the U.S. without going through a constitutional process, make D.C. a state. There is nothing they will not do to get the result that they want.”
“The Supreme Court ought to investigate it internally and reveal who’s responsible, and there’s a certain set of circumstances under which it might be appropriate for Congress to hold such a person responsible,” he went on.
However, there is “not a chance that Nancy Pelosi would do such a thing. She and Schumer issued a statement that attacked the court, just as Schumer said ‘you won’t know what hit you.’ I think it’s likelier that [Pelosi is] in league with whatever’s been done.”
Pelosi and Schumer’s comment stated, “Several of these conservative Justices, who are in no way accountable to the American people, have lied to the U.S. Senate, ripped up the Constitution and defiled both precedent and the Supreme Court’s reputation.”
It made no mention of the lasting effects of the breaching of the court’s secrecy rules. However, a former adviser to Joe Biden and many other Democrats stated about Supreme Court issues on Tuesday that “I’m extraordinarily concerned about what [the breach] does for the capacity of the court to function, and what it does to its legitimacy.”