Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett thanked supporters for the uplifting messages she has received since being nominated to the high court by President Trump during her opening remarks at the confirmation hearing Monday.
“I believe in the power of prayer and it has been uplifting to hear so many people are praying for me,” she told the Senate Judiciary Committee.
Judge Barrett, who currently sits on the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, recalled being a clerk for the late Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, saying she learned more from him than just the law.
“He was devoted to his family, resolute in his beliefs, and fearless of criticism,” she said, noting she strives to do the same. “I never let the law define my identity or crowd out the rest of my life.”
She said courts are not designed to solve problems, but rather that is for the political branches of government who are accountable to the people.
Judge Barrett also honored the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who died last month, and paid homage to retired Justice Sandra Day O’Connor, the first woman to serve on the Supreme Court.
“I was 9 years old when Sandra Day O’Connor became the first woman to sit in this seat,” Judge Barrett said, adding she was 21 when Ginsburg was in that chair.
“[Ginsburg] told the committee what has become of me could only happen in America,” Judge Barrett recalled. “I have been nominated to fill Justice Ginsburg’s seat but no one will ever take her place.”
If confirmed to the high court, Judge Barrett would be the fifth woman on the bench but the first to be a working mother of school-age children.