As you may know, I am a Democrat, a disloyal Democrat.
Democrat because over my lifetime I have generally approved of Democratic policies which were, in brief, pro-working class.
In recent years, as Democrats have become progressively more progressive, they have become unmoored from the principles that once attracted me — a flat playing field where people got an equal shot and the same rules applied to everyone. Thanks to identity politics, that is no longer the case. “Exceptions” are the norm, and there are no norms. “Normal” suddenly is an improper value judgment.
Whether there is a D after my name or not, I think everyone should play by the rules. My rules are that I vote for the person with the best ideas and the best character, if possible. That is not always a Democrat. I try to be fair.
Who would be a fair replacement for Ruth Bader Ginsburg?
She was a tiny intellectual giant in the judiciary, she effected much beneficial change, and will be long remembered. Sorrowfully, she died on the first night of Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish new year, and that will forever mar the holiday for her family.
As to the politics, one of my dear friends, who is a loyal Democrat, said to me, “What do you think Democrats would do” if the same situation fell into their lap? They would try to seize the nomination.
Or, as the Republican talking heads are saying, “What would Nancy and Chuck do?”
They would go for the gold, of course, all the while proclaiming it was to protect the republic, because that’s all they care about, country over party.
You may recall that Republicans would not entertain President Barack Obama’s 2016 nomination of Merrick Garland to the Supreme Court because it was eight months before a presidential election. That was too close, said Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, who now says he will press for an immediate replacement for Ginsburg, 46 days before an election.
Obama has called on McConnell to hew to his own 2016 standard.
McConnell has concocted an alibi that his former objection exists only when the Senate and the president are in different parties.
The Latin phrase for this is bullus shitis.
Yes, even though Nancy and Chuck would do it, I would not. I don’t allow self-serving politicians to establish a moral code for me. Ditto for McConnell.
Since the Supreme Court, like the rest of America, is divided, it is better to have a balanced court than not.
Thanks to President Donald J. Trump’s excellent luck, he got to appoint two conservatives to the High Court, which now leans somewhat right.
In a perfect world, or at least Stu World, Ginsburg’s replacement should be a woman, and probably left of center. Trump will never do that and the Republican Senate will never approve of that.
The composition of the court is highly important to Republicans as they see it as a possible brake against Democrats’ craziest ideas. They see possible gains to be made in gun rights, immigration, affirmative action, and abortion. The Democrats see the same, but from the opposite end of the spectrum.
The “fair” thing is to let the voters decide.
They know that if they elect Trump they may have a court that is very conservative and very friendly to his whims.
They know if they elect Biden, the court would remain much as it is: Divided, but only slightly right..
It’s possible that fair-minded people will see this as a Republican power grab and might decide to punish the GOP.
Politically, trying to ram through a nominee will be no walk in the park for McConnell. The Democrats will use every judicial delaying tactic known to man, and perhaps some known only to goats. They won’t move the goal posts, they will lock them in a UPS van heading to Montreal.
You think Brett Kavanaugh had a rough time? The Democrats will want to stretch out the confirmation hearings until President Biden (in their dreams) withdraws the nomination.
McConnell has 53 Republican senators, but he may not have 53 Republican votes. Maine Sen. Susan Collins and Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski both have said they won’t vote before the election. Utah Sen. Mitt Romney voted for one article of impeachment against Trump and might want to screw him again. S.C. Sen. Lindsey Graham in the past has said the nomination should wait, but he’s kind of a weasel. Pennsylvania Sen. Pat Toomey barely beat a Democratic unknown in 2016 and would place himself in peril with independents if he votes with McConnell.
All statements and positions from politicians I mentioned are subject to change, as senators are subject to lethal pressure.
One thing that won’t change is my opinion: Let the next president, whoever, make the nomination. It is fair and follows McConnell’s own prescription.