Last night, one week before a presidential election, the GOP majority Senate, led by Mitch McConnell, pushed through the confirmation of Amy Coney Barrett, who has only three years of experience as a judge, those years were made possible by Mitch McConnell. Barrett has made alarming statements regarding her positions on the Affordable Care Act, women’s reproductive rights, and the rights of the LGBTQ community. It is fair to call Barrett an extremist.
Despite overwhelming public disapproval, she has taken the seat left vacant by the death of her polar opposite, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg whose dying wish was that her replacement be chosen by the President who wins the 2020 election.
This appointment has stripped the last bit of credibility remaining in the Supreme Court, left it tarnished by this administration’s appointment of a right wing extremist. Trump has made clear that he wanted Barrett confirmed so she will be in place to help him when he contests election results.
Democratic Senators who voted against Barrett represent 13.5 million more people than the Republican Senators who confirmed her. Our democracy is broken. Immediately after Barret’s confirmation, McConnell adjourned the Senate until November 9. There will be no Covid relief bill in the near future.
Barrett was confirmed in a vote that went almost entirely along party lines. Senator Susan Collins (R-ME,) was the lone cross over, voting with all 47 democrats. Collins, notoriously “concerned,” typically buckles under pressure and votes with her Grand Old Party after stringing the public along to the bitter end. She voted with democrats this time because she is rightly “concerned” for her chances of re-election next week. It is too little, too late. Her games have soured her re-election chances, and her constituents see she has passed her political expiration date.
Donald Trump, who lost the popular vote in 2016 by almost 3 million, has now seated three of the nine Supreme Court Justices during his four
hundred years in office. The Supreme Court farce, orchestrated by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, began when he denied President Obama of his constitutional right to choose a SCOTUS nominee. Merrick Garland’s nomination was blocked by a rule, McConnell wrote on the fly, that a President can not nominate a SCOTUS in the year of an election. That was when President Obama had 11 months left in office.
Irony? No, it’s hypocrisy.
Trump’s second pick was to fill an opening he created by
blackmailing nudging Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy into retirement. Kennedy’s son was an investment banker for Deutsche Bank. The has been known to launder money for the Russian mob and it was the last bank willing to lend Donald Trump money, despite his record of defaulting. Justice Kennedy’s son was Trump’s go-to guy at the bank.
Kennedy’s retirement created the opening for Brett
I (like beer) Kavanaugh. There are 12 witnesses ready to testify against Kavanaugh for sexual misconduct. Kavanaugh has also been accused of perjuring himself during his confirmation hearings. His job security will be at risk when he is finally taken to task.
Kavanaugh’s confirmation preceded the 2018 election that resulted in a Democratic wave that flipped the House, and we’re about to make that wave look like a small ripple.
If there is any truth in polling, the following Republicans may be forced into retirement:
- Cory Gardner (CO)
- Martha McSally (AZ)
- Susan Collins (ME)
- Thom Tillis (NC)
- Lindsey Graham (SC)
- Steve Daines (MO)
- John Cornyn (TX)
- Mitch McConnell (KY)
- Donald Trump
Now, how about some good news: The Supreme Court was set at nine seats in 1869, reflecting our nine appellate courts.
Today we have 13 appellate courts.
It would be reasonable to add four seats to match the expanded appellate courts. If Biden were to do so, we would have a 7-6 liberal majority, which is arguably still a balanced court.
More good news: 66.2 million have voted early. That is nearly half of the 13.75 million who voted in total in 2016. States reporting early voting numbers by party affiliation show the Democrats make up 49%, Republicans 29%, and Independents are at 22%. Another encouraging statistic: 15 million of these voters did not vote in 2016.
These numbers are not a reason to become complacent. We still have the electoral college which means the winner of the popular vote doesn’t necessarily win the election. We all have to vote. Vote today, take friends with you, offer elderly neighbors a ride to the polls. We have one week left to strip McConnell of his power by flipping the Senate.
This analogy is for the “suburban housewives” whose vote Trump is desperate for. These last four years have felt like a four-year pregnancy, carrying a 239 lbs 6’3” (sure Jan) baby. Our water has collectively broken and our nation is dilated to 10. It’s time to push.
Democracy is on the ballot.