We should have expected the rampant hypocrisy of Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell, who blocked a hearing and vote on a Supreme Court appointee by then President Barack Obama to replace Antonin Scalia 10 months before the 2016 election, saying whoever wins the election later that year should pick the replacement.
McConnell said new court appointees should not be selected by a sitting president in an election year.
Ruth Bader Ginsburg died over the weekend, six weeks from the election on Nov. 3 of this year and McConnell now wants scandal-ridden Donald Trump to make the selection before an election that polls say he will most likely lose.
McConnell wants Trump to nominate his third conservative justice to the court, turning what was once a balanced court into an extreme right-wing cabal.
“For McConnell, this is a personal triumph worthy of the history books. But history may record it differently,” writes Howard Fineman. “It seems probable that McConnell’s epitaph will note instead that no one since the Southern segregationists of the 1940s and 1950s did more to cripple the proper functioning of all three branches of government, not to mention faith in the very idea of one America.”
Historian Rick Perlstein has long described this chapter in the American story as “Nixonland,” a jagged terrain of White racial fear and populist resentment of the federal authority that began in the mid-1960s. But while GOP presidents from Richard Nixon to Donald Trump have tilled that soil when it suited their purposes, McConnell has been, over the years, its most constant gardener, mixing arcane, cynically hypocritical legislative procedure and judicial appointments to turn emotion into lasting policy.
McConnell has been around so long people think they know him. But they don’t, and that is by design. When you are the apex predator of U.S. politics, you don’t really care what anyone thinks. In Kentucky, where I worked for six years as McConnell was beginning his rise, he is not so much loved as endured. People talk about him like the rainy Ohio River Valley weather: It’s a pain, but it waters the crops. He retains an iron grip on state politics, has been elected statewide six times and is likely to win a seventh term in November. Democrats are pouring millions into defeating him. It’s not a great bet.
What else should we expect from Kentucky? McConnell is a racist on steroids, a belligerent bigot who has become an iron hand of control of the party that controls the Senate, with a corrupt white supremacist president who cares only to please his base of racists and homophobic bigots and others who put party above patriotism.
“McConnell’s actions are totally in keeping with the opportunism with which he has led the Senate. Given a chance, he will always abuse his power,” says columnist Karen Tumulty. “Branding McConnell a hypocrite misses the point. Hypocrisy — coupled with an utter lack of shame — is not a character flaw in his eyes. It is a management style, a means to an end.”
The same can be said of South Carolina Sen. Lindsey O. Graham, who Tumulty appropriately calls “the shape shifting-shifting chairman of the Judiciary Committee. In 2016, Graham questioned McConnell’s move to prevent Obama’s nomination of Merrick Garland to the court with 10 months to go before the election.
Graham claimed he would oppose such a move if it happened again.
“If an opening comes in the last year of President Trump’s term, and the primary process has started, we’ll wait till the next election,” Graham said then.
That was then. This is now and Graham said: “I will support President Trump in any effort to move forward regarding the recent vacancy created by the passing of Justice Ginsburg.”
Graham Democrats have done things “that offended him” and it is payback time.
Got news for you Graham. You are offending a lot of us. So his Texas GOP Sen. Ted Graham, who Tumulty also correctly labels “sanctimonious and pseudo-intellectual.”
“It has been 80 years since a Supreme Court vacancy was nominated and confirmed in an election year,” Cruz told NBC news in 206. “There is a long tradition that you don’t do this in an election year.”
As Cruz and his buddy Trump do so often, he lied. A Democratic Senate majority in 1988 confirmed Anthony M. Kennedy, nominated to the Supreme in Court that election year.
At least two Republican Senators — Lisa Murkowski of Alaska and Susan Collins of Maine — say they won’t vote to confirm a Supreme Court nominee so those to the Nov. 3 election. If two more Republicans bail, no new appointee until after the election and, with hope, a new president.
One could be Sen. Mitt Romney, the only Republican to vote for Trump’s conviction in the impeachment trial. He swears he has no love for Trump. Let’s see if he has any love of his country.
McConnell and Graham are both up for re-election this year. No matter what happens with the Supreme Court, the voters in their states should kick both of the hypocrites out on their ass.
Copyright © 2020 Capitol Hill Blue