22 February 2016
Most politicians traditionally have been of the opinion that the US President, having been “democratically elected” and all that, ought to get the man whom he wants when he nominates someone for a high post. Since Obama has disgraced his office, I agree with those who believe that he ought not to be treated with the same deference; I do not, however, understand how we can fulfill the Senate Majority Leader’s stated determination not to allow a vote on any nomination of a replacement for Antonin Scalia until a new president assumes office, which would mean going 11 months with an even number of justices on the Supreme Court! This determination, and Senator Cruz’s vow to filibuster—see the title of this u.c.—any vote that nevertheless takes place on an Obama pick, would make more sense if the GOP did not control the Senate; since Republicans do compose the majority, it seems to me that they ought to abandon the attitude that I mentioned in my opening sentence, and simply reject Obama’s favorites until he tries to salvage as much of his judicial legacy as he can by selecting someone whom the opposition will find tolerable. Indubitably such a choice would still be inferior to one made by a Republican chief executive, but having injustices rather than justices appointed to our highest court is one of the consequences that ensue when we the people foul up the electoral process.Alternately (and sarcastically), perhaps we could reduce the membership of the SCOTUS to seven persons, compensating for Scalia’s death forcing the retirement of left-wing bigot Sonia Sotomayor!