Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is calling for a House investigation into whether two Supreme Court justices who voted to overturn Roe v. Wade should be impeached for lying at their confirmation hearings about their views of the landmark abortion-rights case.
In a Sunday interview on NBC’s “Meet the Press,” Ms. Ocasio-Cortez, a New York Democrat and progressive firebrand, said that she thinks the justices, Neil Gorsuch and Brett M. Kavanaugh, were dishonest when discussing Roe at the hearings.
“They lied,” Ms. Ocasio-Cortez said during the interview, adding at another point that “there must be consequences for such a deeply destabilizing action and hostile takeover of our democratic institutions.”
In raising the specter of impeachment, Ms. Ocasio-Cortez seized on comments by Senators Susan Collins, Republican of Maine, and Joe Manchin, Democrat of West Virginia, both of whom voted to confirm the justices.
The senators appeared to express misgivings about doing so after the court’s ruling on Roe, saying in statements that the justices had indicated during the confirmation process that the case was a settled matter.
Neither justice gave straightforward answers about ruling on Roe. Justice Kavanaugh declined to directly answer whether the decision was “correct law.” He said at one point that the case was “important precedent of the Supreme Court that has been reaffirmed many times.”
Justice Gorsuch followed a similar tack. He refused to say how he would rule on Roe, noting that the decision was “a precedent of the U.S. Supreme Court that had been reaffirmed.”
“For a judge to start tipping his or her hand about whether they like or dislike this or that precedent would send the wrong signal,” he added. “It would send the signal to the American people that the judge’s personal views have something to do with the judge’s job.”
Ms. Ocasio-Cortez said in the NBC interview that the remarks by Ms. Collins and Mr. Manchin amounted to a “very explosive allegation” that warranted an inquiry by the House Judiciary Committee as a step toward impeachment.
“I believe that lying under oath is an impeachable offense,” she said.
The House can impeach a federal judge by a simple majority vote. Conviction in the Senate requires a two-thirds majority. Only one Supreme Court justice, Samuel Chase, has been impeached in American history. He was acquitted by the Senate.