4 Thoughts on POTUS and the Supreme Court opening

February 16, 2016

1) I absolutely think President Obama should carefully weigh his options and nominate the most qualified candidate to replace Antonin Scalia on the Supreme Court.

2) I absolutely think my conservative friends should stop suggesting he not submit a nomination because it’s an election year. Since when do we stop governing the nation just because there’s an election coming up? The US Constitution specifically says it’s the President’s duty to nominate Supreme Court candidates. So what other parts of the Constitution should we just ignore in this election year?

3) I absolutely think the GOP-controlled Senate should carefully weigh the merits of the nominee and either approve, reject or filibuster long enough to delay the issue, as is their right.

4) I absolutely think my liberal friends should stop acting like the Democratic Party has never done to a Republican president’s nominee what the conservatives in the Senate are threatening to do with whomever Obama nominates. To wit:


For background on the 2003/Estrada reference, here’s an old CNN article about the 2-year Democratic filibuster that blocked his appointment … and this wasn’t even for the Supreme Court, it was for a US appellate court position.

For more on the Alito reference, note this ABC News post from 2009 pointing out that Obama is the first President to have previously voted to filibuster against a Supreme Court nominee.

And lastly, how about what Democratic Senator Chuck Schumer said in 2007?

So, to my liberal friends, please get over this idea that the Senate Republicans are doing something new and unsavory. They’re only doing what Senate Democrats have done several times in the past.

And for my conservative friends, please get over this idea that President Obama has to stop governing our nation because this is an election year. You may not like him, but that doesn’t change the fact that he has a Constitutional responsibility to uphold.

Postscript, Feb. 22: Turns out that, in 1992, Senator Joe Biden — currently our Vice-President — had some strong feelings on this same issue.

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