Washington, D.C. – Following the devastating passing of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg a week ago today, and Republican Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s promise to fill her seat in an election year, Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH) delivers this week’s Weekly Democratic Address. Senator Brown begins by saying that instead of working on another COVID relief bill to help Americans across the country, Leader McConnell is pushing through a nominee who will not only undermine Justice Ginsburg’s legacy but who could also put an end to the Affordable Care Act during a time when people are relying on their health care more than ever. Senator Brown emphasizes that this is purely a power grab by Leader McConnell, who is more committed to corporate special interests than helping the American people deal with the effects of the pandemic. Senator Brown closes by saying Democrats are going to keep fighting to meet this moment and preserve the rights of the American people.
Senator Brown’s remarks as delivered follow:
“Next week, on October 1st, rent, mortgage, utilities, and other bills are due for millions of families who won’t have a way to pay them.
“Just last week, another 870,000 Americans lost their jobs.
“What are all of these workers who lost jobs because of this pandemic, what are they to do, without the $600 a week in unemployment insurance they lost, because President Trump and Leader McConnell and Republican Senators, simply in August, let it expire?
“These families face impossible decisions – do they drain their savings? Do they go to payday lender? Do they put their bills on credit cards? Or are they out of options, do they face eviction? All of those are horrible choices that people shouldn’t have to make.
“Americans are frustrated for good reason, they’re angry for good reason. They’ve lost loved ones because of President Trump’s failure to get this pandemic under control.
“So many public schools can’t open in-person. Parents and teachers are under an overwhelming amount of stress. School districts and families simply don’t have the resources for all the additional technology and safety precautions they need to open safely.
“Our state governments, our local communities are looking at massive layoffs. Small businesses that are the lifeblood of local communities are shuttering, one after another, some of them permanently.
“And for months, Leader McConnell and President Trump just refused to pass anything to help this country get through this crisis.
“The stock market is back up, so they think everything is just fine, because President Trump, a good stock market automatically means a good economy. Nothing to do with wages. Nothing to do with employment. Nothing to do with people’s standards of living. They see no urgency.
“But now, after months of inaction, they are willing to drop everything, they’re willing to move heaven and earth to put another corporate special interest judge on the Supreme Court.
“Leader McConnell has spent the last six months ignoring this pandemic and this economic crisis, and now he wants to pack the court –that is supposed to serve the American people and dispense fair justice – he wants to pack the court in a way that will put another corporate special interest judge on the court with another judge who always rules for corporations over workers.
“So much is at stake with this nominee.
“The Supreme Court will hear yet another case trying to overturn the entire Affordable Care Act in just a few weeks.
“The judge could do what the American people rejected over and over – he could, the judges could throw out the entire Affordable Care Act. They would take away the protections for preexisting conditions for millions of Americans in the middle of a pandemic.
“Families’ health care is at stake.
“Americans’ ability to vote is at stake, with this court.
“Worker protections on the job are at stake.
“The freedom to organize a union is at stake.
“The progress we have made on equality and civil rights, especially for LGBTQ equality is at stake.
“Reforming our justice system is at stake.
“American privacy rights in the digital age are stake.
“Women’s freedom to make their own health care decisions also is at stake.
“And with the President of the United States continuously threatening he will not accept the results of the election, I mean think of that. No president’s ever done that. Threatening he won’t accept the results of the election. Our democracy is at stake as he tries to install another Trump judge on the court.
“The American people deserve to have their voices heard on these decisions that affect their lives. People have already started voting – they’re already- as we speak, as we listen. They’re casting ballots. These votes should count.
“This comes down to one question: whose side are you on?
“McConnell and Trump are going to drop everything to grab more power for corporations and for their wealthy friends.
“Democrats are going to keep fighting for everyone else – we’re fighting to put money in pockets of workers, to manufacture more masks and coronavirus tests, and to support schools and communities and small businesses.
“We fight to reform our justice system.
“We fight to meet- we’re rising to meet this moment.
“If you love this country, you fight for the people who make it work. That’s what Democrats will continue to do every single day.
“Thank you for joining us.”