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Conservatives invoke JFK to defend ACB

The Judicial Crisis Network is enlisting John F. Kennedy's voice in a new ad defending Supreme Court Nominee Amy Coney Barrett against concerns that her Catholic faith will guide her judicial decisions.


Details: The ad relies on then-Senator Kennedy's famous speech on religious tolerance ahead of his election as the nation's first Catholic president.

  • "Today I may be the victim," Kennedy told the Greater Houston Ministerial Association in September 1960. "But tomorrow it may be you."

Reality check: While most Supreme Court justices have been Protestant over the course of U.S. history, Catholics currently comprise a majority of the nation's high court.

The big picture: "JFK" is the latest ad in a $10 million blitz by the conservative group as they brace for contentious confirmation hearings starting Oct. 12, just three weeks before election day.

  • Reserving time in Colorado, Iowa and West Virginia, JCN is hoping to sway senators from those states to support Barrett and secure her confirmation.
  • Organizations on both sides of the aisle are spending millions to try to influence lawmakers in the fight to fill Ruth Bader Ginsburg'sseat and energize socially-driven voters ahead of November.

The backdrop: The Trump campaign and conservative groups have been sensitive to speculation by Democrats about how Barrett's own faith could impact rulings.

  • Democrats fear going too hard on Barrett in her confirmation hearings could backfire but that's also because she's a woman.
  • They plan to give Democratic vice presidential nominee Sen. Kamala Harris a spotlight to shine attention on Barrett's history on health care and labor rights.

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