Sen. Chris Murphy Wednesday slammed Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell for calling members of the Senate to vote next week on a judicial nomination rather than to work on legislation about coronavirus.
"I think remote voting is possible and needed," the Connecticut Democrat said on MSNBC's "Morning Joe." "But I also think we need to be clear about why the Senate is coming back into session next week."
Rather than working on legislation, or "to do oversight on the bungled and mismanage response by the Trump administration of the coronavirus," McConnell is calling the Senate in to "get one of his friends, his political allies, appointed to the bench."
That nominee, U.S. District Judge Justin Walker of Kentucky, has been nominated for the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals. Walker is described as a "protege" of McConnell, reports NBC News. Walker is one of several judges coming up for consideration.
The House is not returning to session next week, after its physician said it would not be safe for them while Washington, D.C., still has high numbers of people with coronavirus.
"If you were going to put at risk the lives of thousands of capital workers, these are cafeteria workers, janitors as well as political staffers, then let's make sure we're actually responding to the crisis," said Murphy.
Meanwhile, 46 senators were to offer legislation Wednesday to President Donald Trump to use the Defense Production Act to ramp up the number of swabs and masks being made in the United States.
The president has used the DPA in "dribs and drabs," said Murphy, explaining that the legislation would allow oversight on what the administration is doing to order the production of materials "because right now we don't have that visibility."
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