Ranking Member Dianne Feinstein is facing calls to resign or to be removed from her post atop the Senate Judiciary Committee over civility she showed Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham.
Following four days of confirmation hearings for Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett (which were mostly civil), Feinstein applauded Graham’s handling of them and described them during her closing remarks as “one of the best” she’s ever participated in.
“Chairman, I just want to thank you,” Feinstein started via Axios. “This has been one of the best set of hearings that I’ve participated in and I want to thank you for your fairness and the opportunity of going back and forth.”
She continued: “It leaves one with a lot of hopes, a lot of questions, and even some ideas of perhaps some good bipartisan legislation we can put together to make this country even better. So thank you so much for your leadership.”
Axios reports Graham also lauded his Democratic college and the behavior of the committee’s Democratic members: “I know we have very different views about the judge and whether we should be doing this or not. But having said all that, to my Democratic colleagues, you have challenged the judge, you have challenged us, and I accept those challenges as being sincere and not personal.”
The two also shared a hug at the conclusion of the hearing.
Watch the exchange below:
— CSPAN (@cspan) October 15, 2020
As Axios reports, several progressives online expressed dissatisfaction with the Democratic leader and said it was “time for Senator Feinstein to step down.”
“It’s time for Sen. Feinstein to step down from her leadership position on the Senate Judiciary Committee. If she won’t, her colleagues need to intervene,” said Brian Fallon, a former Clinton campaign official.
“She has undercut Democrats’ position at every step of this process, from undermining calls for a filibuster and Court reform straight through to thanking Republicans for the most egregious partisan power grab in the modern history of the Supreme Court,” he added.
“If Senate Democrats are going to get their act together on the courts going forward, they cannot be led by someone who treats Sunrise activists with contempt and the Republican theft of a Supreme Court seat with kid gloves,” Fallon concluded.
The progressive grassroots group Indivisible Guide also tweeted critically of Feinstein.
“Nothing says ‘this process is an illegitimate sham’ quite like hugging it out with the guy who’s in charge of the illegitimate sham,” the group said.
“Senator Feinstein’s behavior today was a perfect summation of why we can’t just elect Democrats — we need to hold them accountable too,” the group added in a second tweet.
Senator Feinstein's behavior today was a perfect summation of why we can't just elect Democrats–we need to hold them accountable too.
That's exactly what Indivisible's across the country are doing every single day. Join a local group near you: https://t.co/gOpLiPIGCR
— Indivisible Guide (@IndivisibleTeam) October 15, 2020