Note: this piece was originally published in the Washington Post, and was written by Checks & Balances member George Conway.
The New York Democrat has expressed regret for some of what he said, but this incident is worth considering in its totality. On Wednesday, he spoke to abortion-rights supporters at a rally in front of the court as the justices were hearing a challenge to a Louisiana law that would require physicians performing abortions to have the right to admit patients to local hospitals. Reaching a fevered rhetorical pitch, Schumer turned and gestured toward the court building and said: “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.”
That triggered an unusual and sharp rebuke from Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. “Justices know that criticism comes with the territory, but threatening statements of this sort from the highest levels of government are not only inappropriate, they are dangerous,” Roberts said in a written statement. “All Members of the Court will continue to do their job, without fear or favor, from whatever quarter.”