Disgraced former Senator Al Franken joined Alex Witt on her Saturday show for a lengthy discussion about the news of the day, which after President Trump's health included the nomination of Amy Coney Barrett. During the segment, the network that laments the lack of truth in the politics let Franken get away with the lie that Barrett has taken money from an organization that favors the sterilization of transgender individuals.
Witt had asked Franken about the Senate's schedule given that multiple Republicans have come down with COVID, "They're having to quarantine right now for the next 10 to 14 days. What do you make of the decision to push ahead, nonetheless?"
Franken gave the standard liberal answer that Republicans and Barrett herself are being hypocritical, but towards the end of his answer, declared:
And also she's a terrible choice in so many ways. I questioned her, as you may remember, she had taken money from the Alliance for Defense of Freedom [sic], a hate group, The Southern Poverty Law Center had labeled them as a hate group. They are for the sterilization of transgender people and she took money from them.
Just because SPLC says something, doesn't make it true. As National Review reported in 2017 when Franken first made the charge, the European Court of Human Rights was tackling the question of whether a transgender individual should be allowed to change the sex listed on government-issued documents. Also, according to NRO, the Alliance Defending Freedom didn't even address the question, arguing instead that EU member states should be allowed to decide the question for themselves.
He also called Barrett "extreme" for believing "that life starts and conception."
For her part Witt could be heard expressing approval as Franken spread his lies and at the end agreed, "But, senator, despite all of this, it is entirely possible she will be confirmed" and instead of challenging Franken's wild accusation, moved on to whether or not Democrats should pack the Court.
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Here is a transcript of the October 3 show:
Weekends with Alex Witt
12:48 PM ET
ALEX WITT: They're having to quarantine right now for the next 10 to 14 days. What do you make of the decision to push ahead, nonetheless?
AL FRANKEN: I think the decision to push ahead in the very beginning after Ruth Bader Ginsburg died was absolutely, totally hypocritical. I was there in '17 when the president nominated Merrick Garland. All of them said the same thing, “Well the president can't nominate someone this close to an election.” Coney Barrett went on CBS TV after Scalia died and made the exact same case, saying that the president can't nominate someone during an election year. She contrasted it to when Anthony Kennedy was sworn in, in February of '88. She made the point that that had come from Powell's resignation. She said “well, that's a conservative judge and the new judge, justice will be conservative. That's appropriate.” But when she said Scalia was an arch conservative or committed conservative, whatever the word she used and said that Obama appointee would change the balance of the court and that was inappropriate.
You go back and see her words. She's a total hypocrite. Not only are the Republican members of the Senate hypocrites, they wouldn't meet with Merrick Garland. And they lied about what the so-called Biden rule was. There was no Biden rule. And this is so hypocritical. And also she's a terrible choice in so many ways. I questioned her, as you may remember, she had taken money from the Alliance for Defense of Freedom [sic], a hate group, The Southern Poverty Law Center had labeled them as a hate group. They are for the sterilization of transgender people and she took money from them. She's an extreme choice, she believes conception starts at conception -- that life starts at conception and that it would be a crime to destroy an egg that was fertilized in in vitro fertilization, a frozen egg.