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A minimum of 35% and a maximum of 65% of Democrats say the GOP-controlled Senate should’ve considered Merrick Garland in 2016 but that the GOP-controlled Senate should not consider Amy Coney Barrett now. A minimum of 17% and a maximum of 40% of Republicans say the Senate was correct in not considering Obama’s nominee but that the Senate should consider Trump’s pick now:

Many people will perceive these roughly half of Democrats and one-third of Republicans as hypocrites. In charitable defense of the Democrats is the argument that the Republicans acted in bad faith first and so what is good for the goose is good for the gander. Additionally, Democrats can point out that while both Garland and Barrett will have been nominated “in an election year”–the implication being that since president Obama tried to rush his nomination, president Trump should be able to do the same–Garland’s election year had over nine months left in it when he was formally selected. Barrett’s will barely have three months left in hers. There was thrice as much time to consider Garland as there will be to consider Barrett.

In charitable defense of the Republicans, because they controlled the upper house then and they control it now, Democrats are demanding Republicans act against their own interests in both 2016 and 2020 while the Democrats are not required to correspondingly act against their own interests in either case. Additionally, Republicans can point out that the Constitution does not grant predominance to the Executive in the appointment of judges–the Senate is an equal partner. That is why historically when the Presidency and Senate have been split during an election year nomination the nominee doesn’t get through while he nearly always gets confirmed when the Presidency and Senate are in the same party’s control.

More cynical–or perspicacious, or both–people will recognize these things for what they are: Attempts to gain power by whatever pretense is most useful for doing so in the moment. Losers care about principles; winners care about interests–their own and those of their supporters, that is.

 
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  1. res says:

    The whoever controls the senate decides argument is simple and correct IMO. These links give some good analysis (thanks to J. Ross for the second).
    https://www.nationalreview.com/corner/supreme-court-why-no-justice-has-beenconfirmed-in-the-fall-of-a-presidential-election-year/
    https://townhall.com/tipsheet/guybenson/2020/09/21/analysis-the-supreme-court-vacancy-n2576511

    More discussion under this post https://www.unz.com/isteve/what-if-rbg-had-her-fingers-crossed-while-making-her-dying-wish/#comment-4179404

    From that comment I would also recommend.

    This paper gives a look at how the ideology scores for Trump’s possible replacements (and two of Biden’s) compare to sitting and recent Supreme Court justices. Worth noting that Barrett is shown about halfway between Gorsuch and Alito (Figure 1).
    http://epstein.wustl.edu/research/ReplacingJusticeGinsburg.pdf

    Notice that Kavanaugh was shown as being almost as conservative as Thomas there (Figure 1). A good indicator that YMMV on these analyses.

  2. Or how about this:

    The laws of the land matter, elections matter, candidates matter, and parties matter. Anybody who rants on and on about how the Red Team and the Blue Team are just a Deep State Punch and Judy show is a moron and needs to be ignored.

    The statement that “if elections made any difference they wouldn’t let us vote” is not wisdom. The truth of the matter is that if elections made no difference, those who were serious in the pursuit of power would quickly lose interest in them. As of now this is not the case, but to the extent that it is true, it is much more true of Democrats than of Republicans, the former of whom are growing increasingly comfortable with merely being the leaders and beneficiaries of the permanent revolution. The Republican Party, faulty as it is, is the nest of the incipient Caesarism which alone can stand against the Oligarcho-Bonapartism of the revolution. This party apparatus and your vote still have weight. In short, vote for Trump and the straight Republican ticket. It makes a big difference.

    • Agree: iffen
    • Thanks: V. K. Ovelund
  3. Twinkie says:

    That august political philosopher of our times, Obama, once snapped that “elections have consequences… I won” or some such thing when the GOP tried to negotiate with him. Harry Reid went nuclear on judicial filibuster when the Democrats controlled the Senate.

    Well, truly what is good for the goose is good for the gander. Whatever may happen in the future, for now, the Republicans control the presidency and the Senate, and they should nominate and seat the vacant Supreme Court slot, period. 6-3 or 5-4 on all the major SCOTUS cases would be great, and maybe, just maybe, it will finally serve as a backstop for all the insane leftist overreach.

    Judge Barrett may be okay (who knows, we don’t know until she assumes the seat), but I would like someone as “conservative” as possible. Another Alito or Thomas would be fine with me (another Scalia would be even better, but he was one of the a kind).

  4. Wielgus says:
    @Intelligent Dasein

    The somewhat controversial Labour MP Ken Livingstone, for a time Mayor of London, liked to use the expression “If voting changed anything, they would abolish it”. Yet he continued to take part in the electoral game and was frequently successful.
    Chris Mullin, another Labour MP, wrote A Very British Coup, describing the British deep state removing a leftish Labour prime minister from power. But books aside, Mullin continued to be a Labour MP, and not a particularly radical one either. MPs of course make quite a bit of money.

    • Agree: Curmudgeon
    • Replies: @Curmudgeon
  5. Mr Epigone says:

    More cynical–or perspicacious, or both–people will recognize these things for what they are: Attempts to gain power by whatever pretense is most useful for doing so in the moment. Losers care about principles; winners care about interests–their own and those of their supporters, that is.

    I say:

    INTERESTS MATTER

    WHITE INTERESTS MATTER

    I wrote this about USA foreign policy interests in October of 2019:

    A foreign policy expert from Nutbush, Tennessee, once asked the most important question in the formulation of foreign policy: WHAT’S LOVE GOT TO DO WITH IT?

    The rancid treasonites in the Republican Party put the interests of Israel ahead of the interests of the United States of America.

    White Core America — the new political party on the march — will always put the interests of the USA ahead of the interests of other nations and regions and diasporan Jew troublemakers who try to drag the USA into wars on behalf of Israel.

    A woman from Connecticut — with ancestry from Kentucky — was once so exasperated by all the Republican Party presidential primary candidates pandering to evangelical voters and Israel First Jew donors in a debate that she let loose with a Tweet that made me bust out laughing in agreement.

    Nutbush, Tennessee, is far from New Canaan, Connecticut, but the ladies from there have some grit and talent.

    Israel is a millstone client state of the American Empire, and it must be quarantined before it causes any more trouble.

    If you want a robust global presence for the American Empire without endless and unnecessary war for Israel, then you should support the White Core America political party instead of the rancid treasonites in the Republican Party who put the interests of Israel first.

    I’m just reading on the internet now how rancid treasonites in the Republican Party such as Lindsey Graham and Willard Mitt Romney and unassimilated interlopers such as Marco Rubio are basically saying that the American Empire must fight forever wars on behalf of Israel. Screw Off Republican Party!

    https://www.unz.com/anepigone/everybody-loves-israel/#comment-3491098

    Tweets from 2015:

  6. INTERESTS MATTER

    WHITE INTERESTS MATTER

    I wrote this in December of 2019:

    Michael Savage’s billionaire caffeine king kid Russ Weiner brings up why it is important that the new political party called WHITE CORE AMERICA acts more like the VIRGINIA COMPANY than a regular political party. The Virginia Company was about loot, property and profits and White Core America has to be seen to be operating on the behalf of all those who support and vote for it.

    The Russ Weiner billionaire of caffeine pop drinks brings up the importance of grabbing market share like a bastard on a national scale. The new political party White Core America must grab votes and dollars and it must barge into every kind of market imaginable from beer to bonds to shady financial instruments. White Core America must get into TV and radio and the internet and global banking and shipping and everything else. White Core America will act like a corporation just like the Virginia Company did and it must translate voter numbers into market share and it must be ruthless about doing so.

    White Core America must attack the Republican Party and Trump for failure to deliver on their business model. White Core America must also attack the Republican Party for failing to defend the historic American nation and for failing to advance the interests of the European Christian ancestral core of the USA.

    Trump and the Republican Party have crawled into bed with the internet corporations and the corporate media, and Trump and the Republican Party are more than happy to see patriotic Americans censored in the corporate media and the internet if it protects their market share of the electorate.

    Trump is now touting trade deal scams that are just as vile as any Reagan or Clinton or Bush ever pushed. Trump puts the interests of Israel over and above the interests of the USA.

    White Core America must pledge to begin financially liquidating billionaires and corporations and transnational banking consortiums that do not benefit the USA as a whole.

    White Core America Party:

    AFFORDABLE FAMILY FORMATION

    IMMIGRATION MORATORIUM NOW!

    DEPORT ALL ILLEGAL ALIEN INVADERS NOW!

    TOTAL STUDENT LOAN DEBT REPUDIATION

    TEN GRAND A MONTH PEWITT CONJURED LOOT PORTION

    NATIONALIZE THE FEDERAL RESERVE BANK NOW!

    FIT AS A FIDDLE TARIFF ACT TO PAY FOR FREE AT THE POINT OF DELIVERY NATIONAL HEALTH CARE SERVICE

    https://www.unz.com/anepigone/the-ghost-of-ross-perot/#comment-3605517

  7. songbird says:

    Is Kritarchy in modern times a US invention and export?

    I get that idea in a certain sense, but, then again, US judges often seem to be looking for foreign precedent.

  8. Realist says:

    More cynical–or perspicacious, or both–people will recognize these things for what they are: Attempts to gain power by whatever pretense is most useful for doing so in the moment. Losers care about principles; winners care about interests–their own and those of their supporters, that is.

    The SCOTUS is a tool of the Deep State…SCOTUS is set up to provide for the Deep State’s goal of continuing and advancing their wealth and power.

  9. iffen says:

    I’m guessing that it’s going to be a close run thing whether the good guys (us) can regain control of the visible state institutions and that means that control of the deep state is not even on the menu?

  10. @Wielgus

    Chris Mullin, another Labour MP, wrote A Very British Coup, describing the British deep state removing a leftish Labour prime minister from power.

    The book was made into a TV drama. When I first saw it 30+ years ago, I wondered whether art was imitating life or vice versa. The salient point was, of course, was those who appear to be in control, are not.

  11. I find it interesting that the composition of the Supreme Court is now openly an issue of the political leanings of the candidates. The law is the law. It is neither left nor right. It should be irrelevant what the political leanings of a judge is.
    All countries with Constitutions, if I believe the recent rulings in several countries, had their Constitutions created in a vacuum. There were no records of discusions as to intent, and the people writing the Constitutions were illiterate having no access to dictionaries.
    It would seem obvious to me, that the framers of the US Constitution understood what words meant, and understood function of the “Law Lords” in Britain, who could only interpret law, not create it. If the function of a court is to interpret, it cannot create. Part of creating, is altering definitions of words, or stretching meaning beyond the discussions and debates surrounding the particular issue in question.
    It seems to me, that while there are some who promote the concept of strict constitutional judges, even those people are not, as many words now have different meanings than they did even 50 years ago. I recall hearing one lawyer say lower court decisions before the Supreme Court, boil down to a question of whether the law will be upheld or whether the lower court judges can make up shit as they go along.

    • Replies: @Audacious Epigone
  12. “Losers care about principles; winners care about interests.” Now yer talkin’. Finally one of you guys has said something that is true. None of this, oh, Republicans good, Democrats bad crap.

    All crooks. All.

  13. @Curmudgeon

    That one of the most common accolades the late RBG is receiving is that she was so passionate in her beliefs sums up just how far afield from originalism we’ve come. The last thing a judge should be is passionate about her own beliefs when deciding cases. But that’s the game now and we’re not going back anytime soon.

    • Replies: @iffen
  14. iffen says:
    @Audacious Epigone

    [MORE]
    Judges 2:10-19 When all that generation had been gathered to their fathers, another generation arose after them who did not know the LORD nor the work which He had done for Israel. Then the children of Israel did evil in the sight of the LORD, and served the Baals; and they forsook the LORD God of their fathers, who had brought them out of the land of Egypt; and they followed other gods from among the gods of the people who were all around them, and they bowed down to them; and they provoked the LORD to anger.

    They forsook the LORD and served Baal and the Ashtoreths. And the anger of the LORD was hot against Israel. So He delivered them into the hands of plunderers who despoiled them; and He sold them into the hands of their enemies all around, so that they could no longer stand before their enemies. Wherever they went out, the hand of the LORD was against them for calamity, as the LORD had said, and as the LORD had sworn to them. And they were greatly distressed. Nevertheless, the LORD raised up judges who delivered them out of the hand of those who plundered them. Yet they would not listen to their judges, but they played the harlot with other gods, and bowed down to them.

    They turned quickly from the way in which their fathers walked, in obeying the commandments of the LORD; they did not do so. And when the LORD raised up judges for them, the LORD was with the judge and delivered them out of the hand of their enemies all the days of the judge; for the LORD was moved to pity by their groaning because of those who oppressed them and harassed them. And it came to pass, when the judge was dead, that they reverted and behaved more corruptly than their fathers, by following other gods, to serve them and bow down to them. They did not cease from their own doings nor from their stubborn way.

  15. As Mitt Romney pointed out,* the determining factor has always been whether or not the President’s party controlled the Senate. It was unhelpful for McConnell & company to pretend the Merrick Garland affair was governed by some sort of principle & precedent. Because they told a stupid lie, we now get credibly charged with hypocrisy. Better to have just been open about it.

    *I don’t imagine I’ll construct many other comments that open with those words.

    • Agree: Audacious Epigone
    • Replies: @Pericles
  16. Usura says:

    What strikes me about these figures: Republican opinion on the issue was fairly evenly split in 2016, while democrats were more homogeneous in their support for ‘confirm’. Now, both sides are comparably homogeneous. In other words, while the democrats were already galvanized, republicans have become so.

    • Agree: Audacious Epigone
  17. Unprincipled winners are always tyrants, as they have no moral code to restrain their actions.

    That was the purpose of the constition….to make sure that the people who would naturally come to lead society anyway had legally codified moral restraint.

    What’s been going on in the U.S. Govt since the GW Bush presidency is pure power politics. It’s the main reason that “common” people, who have no say in these political struggles (and receive no benefit from them) have struggled. Its a scorched earth campaign, where each side tries to harm the other by destroying their base. The two sides are actively using the govt they control against the entire citizenry of the U.S., running a zero sum game with international repercussions.

    Things will only get worse from here.

    • Replies: @Nicholas Stix
  18. Lowe says:

    What is the base of the Democratic party? Wealthy businesspeople, lawyers, bureaucrats, overqualified baristas, welfare mothers, criminals, and immigrants from hostile, alien cultures.

    All these people deserve to lose, and lose repeatedly. They are not even American in any meaningful sense. I hope McConnell purposefully makes up the most ridiculous, sophistic argument he can, before they vote to confirm Barrett. The more absurd the better. The more butt-hurt Vox and the NYT the better.

    I spit on my enemies. May they suffer and know only defeat and bitterness.

    • Agree: Joseph Doaks
  19. A123 says:

    In charitable defense of the Republicans, because they controlled the upper house then and they control it now, Democrats are demanding Republicans act against their own interests in both 2016 and 2020 while the Democrats are not required to correspondingly act against their own interests

    100% Agree.

    Does anyone think the DNC would wait if they controlled the Senate and Presidency? Nope. The Democrats are openly discussing Packing the Court if they obtain control.

    Filling the seat in a timely manner is the best course of action for National Stability, the Rule of Law, and the GOP. Leaving the seat vacant opens the door to potential 4-4 deadlock scenarios. This could be especially disastrous if the lower courts issue incompatible injunctions and/or rulings on election cases.

    PEACE 😇

  20. Nodwink says:

    The American Right are being provoked into overreach by the effeminate weakness of liberal Democrats, but they could find themselves with a far more formidable opponent in a resurgent Left.

    I hesitate to use the analogy, but the radical Right had incredible success for a decade in Germany, but they overreached (to put it mildly) when in a position of dominance, and found themselves in a world of pain when reality hit.

    • Agree: dfordoom
  21. Pericles says:
    @Servant of Gla'aki

    Because they told a stupid lie, we now get credibly charged with hypocrisy. Better to have just been open about it.

    On the other hand, charged with hypocrisy by leftists. Big deal. Next week it’s Literally Hitler.

  22. @Intelligent Dasein

    They make a difference to the propaganda regime of the state, and that’s mostly it. At best it alters which faction of elites has greater relative influence at the moment, but pretending that either of the parties is standing against “the revolution” is incredibly deluded, the Republican party apparatus is entirely in favor of all the goals of progressivism, they are just the gradualist wing of the progressive party. What the elites want to happen happening slightly slower vs immediately is not a huge difference.

    The truth of the matter is that if elections made no difference, those who were serious in the pursuit of power would quickly lose interest in them

    “If sacrificing virgins to the volcano didn’t bring the rains, the grand pubah would quickly lose interest in it.”

    It makes a big difference.

    They’re all an intra-elite competition and therefore almost never make a significant difference, because most of the time the elites don’t disagree that radically. Amazing you could think this after 4 years of the “worst case scenario” of an “outsider” (Billionare Businessman) being elected making almost no difference at all. Tell me, when were the interests of the elites ever thwarted by the result of an election? Seems to me that America tends to flipflop between republicans and dems about every 8 years, and yet the last 100 years were indistingishable from if there had been a single coherent ruling class that never lost power.

    So between Ronnie “Mr. Amnesty” Reagan, George Bush, and Dubya, which of these were the “difference makers”? We know Trump really hasn’t been one, despite America’s problems becoming more accute and genuine elite disagreement rearing it’s head. Whether he could ever become somebody who makes a difference doesn’t depend on any election (which are propaganda pieces that don’t matter), but on whether he could make the concrete changes to gain control of the direction of institutional power which really determines how government behaves. On this I’m not terribly optimistic, maybe he’ll do a better job in the next 4 years.

    • Replies: @dfordoom
  23. @Nodwink

    Totally inane analogy, since it wasn’t energizing domestic opponents that did facists in in Europe. I don’t know what the hell you’re trying to say with this.

    If you’re implying that confirming their judge is “overreach” that is bound to backfire via (somehow empowering) a “resurgent left” you’re an idiot. If you think a month of bad press (among the still running 50 straight years of bad press) is worse than losing control of the court that dictates the Country’s legislation permanently, then just stop following politics, propaganda about how liberal democracy works has rotted your brain.

  24. A123 says:
    @Nodwink

    You have the analogy 180° backwards.

    The SJW Globalist DNC is embracing 1930’s German style authoritarianism. Their mass media manipulation is straight from Leni Riefenstahl’s playbook. They deploy the Fascist Stormtroopers of Antifa to intimidate those who speak out against their extremism.

    Their BLM riots and overly strict WUHAN-19 restrictions are dramatic examples of overreach. They have alienated large chunks of the American population. Worse yet, they are so detached from reality they cannot see the risk. The SJW Authoritarian bubble of self deception is about to be painfully burst by reality.

    PEACE 😇

  25. @allahu akbar

    How are the Republicans trying to destroy the Dems’ base?

  26. dfordoom says: • Website
    @Athletic and Whitesplosive

    At best it alters which faction of elites has greater relative influence at the moment

    Yes, that’s a good point. Elections are just different factions within the elites jockeying for power. But whichever side wins you’re still going to be ruled by vicious corrupt elites.

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