The Senate Judiciary Committee is due to vote Thursday on advancing the nomination of Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court—but the panel's 10 Democrats will not be present. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and the Democrats on the committee said Wednesday that Democrats will boycott the hearing to protest the "sham process" of rushing Barrett's nomination through, the Hill reports. "We will not grant this process any further legitimacy by participating in a committee markup of this nomination just twelve days before the culmination of an election that is already underway," they said in a statement.
The Democrats said Republicans were violating the "promises and rules" they established in refusing to grant Obama nominee Merrick Garland a hearing in the nine months before the 2016 election. The Democrats said Judiciary Committee rules require two members of the minority party to be present when business is conducted, but committee chairman Sen. Lindsey Graham said he would proceed without the Democrats, NPR reports. "I will move forward," the Republican said. "She deserves a vote." Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has signaled that he wants to hold a full Senate vote on Barrett's nomination Monday, which would install the conservative justice on the court in time to rule on election-related cases. (Read more Amy Coney Barrett stories.)