Vice President Mike Pence spoke at a campaign rally Saturday in The Villages, the nation's largest retirement community, located in a traditionally conservative section of Florida. The community is essential for President Trump's reelection and has hosted visits from Trump surrogates such as Gov. Ron DeSantis.
Mr. Pence addressed the ongoing confirmation hearings for Amy Coney Barrett in the Senate Judiciary Committee in front of the large crowd in Sumter County, Fla. If Judge Barrett is confirmed, she would be President Trump's third appointment to the Supreme Court and would cement a reliably conservative court for decades to come.
"The American people expect Democrats in the Senate to give Judge Barrett a dignified hearing, this time," Mr. Pence said, referencing the controversial Court of Appeals confirmation hearing for Barrett in 2017.
Vice President Pence reminded attendees of the comment made by Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) during the Court of Appeals hearing three years ago, "The dogma lives loudly in you," she said. Sen. Feinstein referred to Judge Barrett's strong Catholic faith, alleging that it would interfere with cases involving abortion rights like Roe v. Wade.
Mr. Pence proclaimed his own religious dedication to cheers from the crowd, saying, "Well, I've got news for the Democrats and their friends in Hollywood - the dogma lives loudly in me."
"The dogma lives loudly in you, and the right to live and work and worship according to dictates of our conscience, lives loudly in the Constitution of the United States of America," said Mr. Pence, a former governor and representative of Indiana.
Mr. Pence also addressed forewarnings of court packing from congressional Democrats if Judge Barrett is confirmed before the election. An article from the Atlantic described the calls from the left for court packing as reaching "a volume that will be difficult for party leaders to ignore."
Sen. Ed Markey (D-MA), a longtime progressive representative, said during a press conference, "Next January, when the Democrats win the Senate and we win the presidency, then we must abolish the filibuster and we must begin a process to expand the Supreme Court, because the Republicans will have stolen two Supreme Court justices."
Mr. Pence condemned the strategy, calling it "the biggest power grab in American history".
Other House Democrats that have floated the idea of court-packing include Rep. Jerry Nadler, the chair of the Judiciary Committee, and outgoing Rep. Joe Kennedy III, grandson of U.S. Senator and U.S. Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy and a grandnephew of U.S. President John F. Kennedy.
When asked if voters deserve to know if he plans to pack the courts if elected, Joe Biden responded, "No they dont. I'm not gonna play this game. He'd love me to talk about, and I've already said something on court packing."
The Villages has two Republicans for every Democrat -President Trump won 68.3% of the vote in Sumter County in 2016. But there is a growing concern for the Trump campaign that older voters in areas like Sumter County may be drifting away from him.
A Quinnipiac poll released Oct. 7 showed that with voters age 65 and older in Florida, Biden was ahead of Trump 55 percent to 40 percent.
In addition, the Pew Research Institute says 1 in 4 votes for all eligible voters are in the 65 and older group, making up a large part of Trump's base.