Tag Archives: obstruction

A patriot in our midst

o-PAUL-REVEREWe survived the American Revolution, the war with Britain afterwards, our slave war among the states, the Civil War, Jim Crow laws, the exclusion of blacks and women from the voting rolls, the Spanish American war, Pearl Harbor, World wars, the McCarthy era, the Cuban Missile Crisis, ‘Nam, Nixon, Billygate, the Iran Contra scandal (“Contra-Fawn-and-Ollie (North)), and 9-11.

But, at long last, will we survive the despot in the West Wing, Mr. Donald Trump, a failed casino operator, intolerant of one and all but especially women and persons of color?

Mr. Trump is best imagined as a relentless undignified thug, engaged in a never-ending assault, elbows akimbo, pushing dignitaries out of the way, hurling insults and trash talk, worst of all, attacking this nation’s first principle, as expressed by Thomas Jefferson, namely, that we are all equal, worthy of respect, amazingly diverse, and all in this together.

Mr. Trump runs down our government, the Courts, Congress, Mr. Trump’s own cabinet, as well as his Republican Party.

Mr. Trump sees himself as the one and only authority that matters.  But what else may one expect of a despot? Continue reading

Full court press

President Ronal Reagan nominated 9th Cir. Court Judge Anthony Kennedy and he was confirmed unanimously by the US Senate in 1988 – a presidential election year

President Ronal Reagan nominated 9th Cir. Court Judge Anthony Kennedy and he was confirmed unanimously by the US Senate in 1988 – a presidential election year

The Republican Majority Leader of the U.S. Senate, Mitch McConnell, and the Republican Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Charles Grassley, both insist that a nominee to the U.S. Supreme Court should not be approved in a presidential election year and they insist instead that the nation wait until the next President is elected, about nine months from now.

Nonsense!

Both Majority Leader McConnell and Chairman Grassley approved and voted for President Ronald Reagan’s Supreme Court nominee, Circuit Judge Anthony Kennedy, in a presidential election year, 1988, when President Reagan was a “lame duck.” (You may want to listen to what Chairman Grassley said in 1988 at Judge Kennedy’s confirmation hearings – http://www.c-span.org/video/?c4580671/grassley-supports-kennedy).

The vagaries of when a presidential nomination may occur has no bearing on what the constitution requires.

Especially when there have been 13 other Justices approved in presidential election years in our nation’s still young history including Justices Oliver Ellsworth (1796), Samuel Chase (1796), William Johnson (1804), Philip Barbour (1836), Roger Taney (1836), Melville Fuller (1888), George Shiras (1892), Mahlon Pitney (1912), John Clarke (1916), Louis Brandeis (1916), Benjamin Cardoza (1932), and Frank Murphy (1940).

The Senate’s refusal to meet its constitutional obligation has allowed us to see how the independence and function of the Supreme Court shall be compromised. Continue reading