Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Dead at 87

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Andrew Donaldson

Born and raised in West Virginia, Andrew has since lived and traveled around the world several times over. Though frequently writing about politics out of a sense of duty and love of country, most of the time he would prefer discussions on history, culture, occasionally nerding on aviation, and his amateur foodie tendencies. He can usually be found misspelling/misusing words on Twitter @four4thefire and his writing website Yonderandhome.com

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108 Responses

  1. Avatar Saul Degraw
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    says:

    Ian Milhauser on Vox said it best, her entire legacy is at risk now: https://www.vox.com/2020/9/18/20917757/justice-ginsburg-ruth-bader-ginsburg-diesReport

  2. Avatar Jaybird
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    says:

    Wait, did we get rid of the filibuster for justices? If we didn’t, maybe we can use it to save the Republic!Report

    • Avatar Kazzy
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      says:

      Who’s this “we”?Report

        • Avatar Kazzy
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          says:

          Yea, I don’t think that does what you think it does. I know why you think it does that. And I know there are folks for whom it’ll do that for.

          But one group and one group alone is responsible for removing the filibuster for SCOTUS appointments: the group that removed it.Report

          • Avatar Jaybird
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            says:

            This shit ends in divorce or war.Report

            • Avatar CJColucci
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              says:

              Like so many other things. Put up a date by when it happens and I’ll put $100 on the over, if I’m still alive to pay it if I’m wrong.Report

              • Avatar Jaybird
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                says:

                Would something like “2 billion in property damage and a bunch of deaths” count as something worth mentioning or does it have to be bigger than that?Report

              • Avatar Chip Daniels
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                says:

                Well that’s a good point.
                “War” can take on many forms.

                The Klan violence surrounding Reconstruction could arguably be said to constitute a Civil War II, as could the the second Klan violence in the 1920s, and the violent reaction to civil rights movement in the 60s.

                Maybe we should just call this our Troubles.Report

              • Avatar Jaybird
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                says:

                Well, *I* wasn’t going to jump immediately to comparing the police protests to what the Klan did but I guess I’m glad that someone put that out there.Report

              • Avatar CJColucci
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                says:

                You’re the one who keeps predicting “divorce or war” over all sorts of things. You know what you mean. Well, maybe you don’t, but then nobody else can tell you, or the potential betting public, what you mean. Can’t place a bet without a definite line. Too easy to welch.Report

              • Avatar Jaybird
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                says:

                I mean “the usual”. People killing each other under lawless circumstances. Property destruction. The Ushe.Report

              • Avatar George Turner
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                says:

                How is that different from a normal day in Chicago?Report

              • Avatar Slade the Leveller
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                says:

                The hell you going on about, son?Report

              • Avatar Dark Matter
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                says:

                Economy is 17 Trillion dollars a year or something. 2 Billion isn’t even a rounding error.

                Similarly “a bunch of deaths” needs to be measured in percentage of population to mean anything, so come back after it’s 1+ million. BTW Covid hasn’t killed a million people world wide.

                The current riots are mild and could be fixed by shooting the rioters if we wanted, they certainly don’t threaten the republic.

                Similarly we Gerrymander less, restrict the vote less, and so on by historical standards.

                All of this, including the conservative judges taking over the country, are Tempest in a Teapot things.Report

    • Avatar North
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      says:

      Mitch axed that one to seat Gorsuch. And he’d have axed it to seat Kavanaugh and if it was still around he’d axe it to replace Ginsburg.Report

      • Avatar Philip H
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        says:

        to be fair, Mitch axed it because Harry Reid axed it for others in 2013. A great many of us were angry with Democrats for that, and several astute pundits noted Republican might well use this for judges and justices at some point. Reid did it anyway.Report

        • Avatar North
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          says:

          Yes, and Mitch was managing a blanket blockade of Obama’s judicial nominees when Harry axed it for the others. So if Harry hadn’t done so, then Mitch would have and would have had even more vacancies to fill. I reluctantly supported Reids decision and I still think it was the best of his two options now.Report

        • Avatar Jesse
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          says:

          “A great many of us were angry with Democrats for that, and several astute pundits noted Republican might well use this for judges and justices at some point.”

          Only if you were dumb enough to think Mitch wouldn’t just do it anyway, if he needed too.

          Actually believing Mitch’s crocodile tears about how mean ole’ Harry Reid destroyed the norms of the Senate, is just not intelligent.Report

          • Avatar Phjilip H
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            says:

            I don’t believe anything McConnel does is genuine, except where it preserves his or the GOP’s power.

            I still maintain that, while McConnell’s actions may have been inevitable, Reid hastened the demise. The fact that Chuck Schumer is even more spineless is telling.Report

  3. Avatar North
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    says:

    She was a grand justice and a grand lady. I am so sad she has passed. I’m also so sad she has passed when she has passed. I am worried this will not be good for the country.Report

    • Avatar Saul Degraw
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      says:

      There are ways I can play this out as creating massive wins and massive danger spots for both parties. I can see McConnell and the Federalist Society rushing a replacement within two or three weeks. But how many Republican Senators are going to worry about voting for a right-wing firebrand who will sink their reelection chances? How many will think they are dead in the water anyway and vote for a right-wing firebrand to ensure post-election employment on the right-wing gravy train?

      The Democrats need to retake the Senate and expand the courts if they want to do anything.

      I highly doubt that the spot remains empty until January 2021.Report

      • Avatar George Turner
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        says:

        Odds are Trump will go with Amy Coney Barrett, and she’ll be confirmed in a jiffy.Report

        • Avatar Saul Degraw
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          says:

          That would be the relatively smart choice but Trump is not that smart and surrounded by lackeys likely to overplay hands. You might be right but he already expressed dislike for her during the last confirmation battle.Report

          • Avatar North
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            Gorsuch was a pretty solid pick and for all the accusations Kavanaugh wasn’t a crazy pick either. Trump outsourced his judge selection to Heritage and it’s served him well. He’s beating W in terms of choices that are uncontroversial with his own side.Report

        • Avatar LeeEsq
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          says:

          Trump met with her and rejected her when Kennedy retired. Apparently she came across as too much like a know-it-all nerd for Trump’s taste. Trump does not like know it all nerds, especially if they are women.Report

      • Avatar North
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        says:

        It will be a dicey and delicate political and campaign puzzle, for sure. And I expect and hope that not even a single Democratic politician will say even one word about expanding the courts.Report

        • Avatar Saul Degraw
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          says:

          Some Republicans (Romney, Murkowski, and maybe Collins) announced that there should not be a vote until after Inauguration day. Maybe they are smart enough to realize what will happen if McConnell pushes a firebrand through and Democrats take the Senate.Report

          • Avatar North
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            says:

            Yeah they only need one more to make it stick. The politics of this are crazy complicated. I wouldn’t be surprised if Mitch is content to let them block it until after the election at least. Trump, though, needs to mix up the election so who knows what he’ll do. Likely name who he’d appoint.Report

        • Avatar Saul Degraw
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          says:

          Also what is it going to take to put seem steal into you and take a bolder stance? Now is the time to fight and be organized. Now is not the time to be using a walker like a slow slow moderate.Report

          • Avatar George Turner
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            says:

            Yes. Twitter is already filled with Democrats threatening to burn the entire country to ash. Gee, I wonder how that will resonate with the vast majority who don’t like seeing their property go up in flames?Report

        • Avatar Saul Degraw
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          says:

          I’m sort of serious. You still seem a bit stuck in the don’t kick me mode of Democratic campaigning. Can anything convince you that you can be a bit more solder and firm and strident without it creating blowback? Or is it always the 1980s in your mind?Report

          • Avatar George Turner
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            says:

            Democrats are torching cities and assassinating people. You’re way way past the blowback point.Report

          • Avatar North
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            Sorry Saul, ol buddy. When given a choice between being internet pure or winning in meatspace I’ll choose meatspace victories every day of the week and twice on Sundays. The far left has demonstrated, over and over and over, that they’re unreliable as hell in terms of doing that lame boring thing called turning out to vote, whereas moderates and older people have a proven record of doing so. Even -IF- the Democrats were interested in expanding the courts in the event of the GOP forcing a justice through, saying they would expand the court prior to the election would be electoral idiocy.Report

            • Avatar LeeEsq
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              says:

              There is no evidence that the so called moderates and older people are as scarred as you think they are. Or even as right-leaning as you think they are. What’s the point of winning of an election if every piece of Democratic legislation gets lochnered by the logic of “hey now brown cow, hey nony none.”Report

            • Avatar Saul Degraw
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              says:

              I think Lee is right here. There is no evidence that moderates are as moderate as you think they are. I am not saying the squad is the majority. They are not. I am saying that this is not 1984 or 1994 anymore either. Democrats don’t have to adopt “please don’t kick me” stances reflexively.Report

              • Avatar North
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                says:

                There is a very big difference, Saul, between saying “The court, yeah we’ll pack it.” vs “We’ll never pack the court.” vs the superior option of saying nothing specific about it at all.

                And I was 14 in ’94. This is not some kind of reflexive cringing, this is carefully reasoned strategy.Report

              • Avatar Saul Degraw
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                says:

                Suppose McConnell manages to am a 45 year old firebrand reactionary through but Democrats take the Senate by a small majority back and Biden wins.

                What should Democrats do to make sure progressive legislation is not killed for a generation from a reactionary judiciary of Federalist Society tankies? Many of whom had minimal trial experience before being anointed to the court.Report

              • Avatar Aaron David
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                says:

                Write good law that is based upon the constitution.Report

              • Avatar Kazzy
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                says:

                But isn’t the Constitution whatever SCOTUS says it is?Report

              • Avatar Aaron David
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                Yes and No. The words are there for any and all to look at and legally interpret, and that is the rub.

                I am sure Burt could say this more eloquently than me, but there are roughly two legal doctrines; originalism and textualism. In other words, what do the actual words say vs. what do they mean. And really, this is why we have a panel of judges and not just one person.

                But what I meant by “based on the constitution” is taking a firm line on what has been written and argued by your ideological opponents and working with and using their arguments to build your case.

                In general, the law follows politics follows culture. If those steps aren’t followed, no matter who is sitting on SCOTUS you won’t get good law that is accepted by a majority. And when you do, there is very little worry about whether the court is too conservative or liberal, as it is the trailing indicator it should be.Report

              • Avatar North
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                says:

                They’d have all kinds of options. They could actually legislate for instance. Congress and the Presidency together have considerably more power than the Supreme Court and if that Federalist Society majority actually started wandering very far outside the court the courts have charted then Democrats would probably retain the other two branches of government for quite some time.Report

              • Avatar Aaron David
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                North gets it.

                None of this happens in a vacuum. There are state and federal laws that are affected by any and all decisions.

                Every day is a lesson in civics.Report

              • Avatar Chip Daniels
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                says:

                Yes, and the Constitution gives Congress and POTUS tremendous power, such as deciding how the courts are structured.

                People talk about “court packing” like it is some freaky thing, but it’s entirely within Congress’ Constitutional role.Report

              • Avatar North
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                says:

                I never once suggested that court packing is unconstitutional. I think that it may not be a good idea because, as Biden noted, nothing would stop the GOP from doing the same thing the next time they got control. It would depend on a lot of factors.
                And even if we all agreed that expanding the courts was a good idea surely no one is naïf enough to think that campaigning on doing such a thing is a good idea.
                There are a LOT of things that the Dems could do if the court started getting revanchist. They strike down Roe vs Wade? Pass a fishing abortion rights bill. DARE those Heritage tankies to try and ban abortion from the bench.Report

              • Avatar Aaron David
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                says:

                I am just going to go ahead and say it; the next time Dems have enough control to pass an Abortion Rights bill, they better go and pass it.

                They have let that particular Chad hang out way too long.Report

              • Avatar North
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                says:

                Well both parties have had Roe v Wade as a reason to not get into the matter.Report

              • Avatar Aaron David
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                says:

                RvW was, at best, a temp solution that is getting very shopworn. Far too many on the right find abortion to be murder and that is spreading outside the base. I always got the feeling it was of more use to the D’s as a fundraising scare, but it is starting to look like that scare is real. The boy who cried wolf and all that.

                The essential problem is RvW is a legal decision, not a law and it needs to be shored up in a bad way, or new precedence will be set. That might well turn around and bite the GOP in the tucas like the AWB did the Dems. Only time will tell.Report

              • Avatar North
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                says:

                Heh, the right has had opportunity many a time to act on RvW and has always declined to do so. Anyone who doesn’t think that both sides use the issue as a vote mobilization and fundraising scare is either wildly naive or deluded.

                But I do agree that the US probably needs to follow the rest of the developed world when it comes to the question of abortion. The right will never settle for that and they’ve used RvW as a way to hide from that problem just as much as the left has used it.Report

              • Avatar Aaron David
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                says:

                The problem is, times change, people change and what was once normal is no longer.

                The Right is right now pushing hard in that direction. And they could really care less how the rest of the world is, as they consider it murder. And they are gaining ground on the issue. If you and I are correct and the left has been using RvW as a fundraiser, then they would have serious egg on their faces. Playing chicken looks stupid when you loose.Report

              • Avatar North
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                says:

                Eh, abortion numbers have been jiggling around in the +- 50% range for generations.

                The right thinks abortion is murder; the left thinks dictating women’s reproductive choices enslaves women to fetuses, I have zero doubt that both sides passionately believe it. Any time the right advances much in banning abortion (and they don’t try very hard) voters, who like to verbally oppose abortion while content in the knowledge that it’s available if they want it, move left. Any time abortion rights begin looking unassailable people move from pro abortion stances into the “have their cake and eat it too” posture of denouncing abortion while secure in the knowledge that it’s there if they need it.

                Both sides have been using RvW as a fundraiser and a vote mobilizer for as long as RvW has existed. The left doesn’t face any particular risk of egg on its face that I can see, what would that even look like?Report

              • Avatar Aaron David
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                says:

                While I personally agree with you on the murder/rights index, the right F’n hates it, and they have just turned a corner re leadership (not sure if you noticed the last 4 years…) and the old paradigm no longer holds.

                As the old saying goes, things work until they don’t.Report

              • Avatar North
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                says:

                Oh sure, so maybe they’re gong to try and actually outlaw abortion now; they’ll reap the whirlwind if they do- there’s a reason the GOP elite has always been so hesitant to actually try to do so. It was only half naked political cynicism- the other half was well founded fear.Report

              • Avatar InMD
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                says:

                I was talking with my wife about how there’s a very cynical part of me that says let them reverse Roe/Casey. Force the pro life side to have to actually confront the issue and see how it plays out.

                Of course I have a heart that prevents me from supporting that due to the collateral damage along the way.Report

              • Avatar Chip Daniels
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                says:

                We already know how this plays out.

                The status quo pre-Roe was that abortion was legal and easily accessible, to the right people and if their husbands or married lover approved.Report

              • Avatar InMD
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                says:

                That’s how it would start in those states that outright banned it. Eventually it would force the GOP to own a lot of really ugly results of their positions they’re shielded from by Roe/Casey. Again, not saying I support it because I think it’s wrong to sacrifice people like that but my suspicion is it would force a major reality check we haven’t had since 1973.Report

              • Avatar LeeEsq
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                says:

                What evidence do you have of this? Every time the Right had to own a lot of really ugly results of their positions, they just dug down harder. Why would abortion be different?Report

              • Avatar InMD
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                says:

                Uh to name a very recent situation gay marriage was winning everywhere at the state level prior to Obergefell after being a wedge conservative issue only 15 years prior to the decision. The belief that liberalism can never win through democratic means is the one I find perplexing.Report

              • Avatar Chip Daniels
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                We have to assume that all the norms are gone and all that’s left is bare knuckle power plays. We have to assume the GOP will use any tool available to them no matter what we do.

                There once was a time when the objection to norm-busting was that “the American people won’t stand for it”.
                But as it turns out, the American people will stand for a lot of things once thought inviolable.Report

              • Avatar George Turner
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                says:

                So let me set the record straight as they say, I said and I quote ‘if the President consults and cooperates with the Senate or moderates his selections then his nominees may enjoy my support as did Justice Kennedy and Justice Souter.’ I made it absolutely clear that I would go forward with the confirmation process as chairman even a few months before a presidential election. If the nominee were chosen with the advice and not merely the consent of the Senate just as the constitution requires.” – Joe Biden, 3/24/2016)

                Trump and McConnell have to move forward with the nomination. They have to do it for Joe Biden.Report

              • Avatar Chip Daniels
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                says:

                Why should anyone think so?Report

              • Avatar KenB
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                says:

                This is a defensible approach, though not one I’d agree with. But you still need to game this out more than one move ahead — even if the Dems take the White House and both chambers of Congress in 2021, it’s not a permanent situation. If one side can add seats to manufacture a Supreme Court majority, so can the other when they get power. It’s a dollar auction.Report

              • Avatar George Turner
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                says:

                Well heck, we’ve already had a bunch of Senate Democrats threatening to impeach Justice Kavanaugh. I’m sure they’d see the logic of just eliminating justices they don’t agree with by any means necessary, which removes the need for packing and just makes the court part of the spoils system.Report

              • Avatar Chip Daniels
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                There isn’t any conceivable world in which the GOP with a unified government would hesitate to use court packing.

                So our only hope is to gain control and hang on until such time as the fanatical right is driven from control of the GOP.

                Part of any game is understanding when you do or don’t have negotiating power over the opponent.

                We don’t.Report

              • Avatar George Turner
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                says:

                Why would you say that. They’ve never done it before, even when they controlled the White House, the Senate, and the House.Report

          • Avatar North
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            says:

            I didn’t expect that every single one of the party would toe the line on that. We’ll see what the leadership and Biden say. I expect not a lot.Report

          • Avatar George Turner
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            says:

            The reason I think Mitch will proceed is that it will create a spectacle, with Democrats viciously attacking Amy Barrett, calling her every name in the book, denouncing her Catholic faith, and hoping her kids all die of cancer.Report

  4. Avatar Aaron David
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    says:

    Hang on, it’s about to get bumpy.Report

  5. Avatar greginak
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    says:

    Well conservatives have been freaking out about how radical Biden will be if he wins. Right now is a hinge around which how radical he will be. If C’s do what everybody thinks they will do, push through a Justice and bs their way around their own abject lying, there will be matter/anti matter collision level energy for D radicalism now and for the foreseeable future.

    SoCon’s go full bore overturn Row v Wade in the next year if they get a new justice which would be a mess and be a medium term electoral loser for them.

    This is going to get fugly.Report

  6. Avatar KenB
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    says:

    Amid all the expected commentary about what should or shouldn’t happen between now and Election Day, I saw a pretty smart observation on Twitter — it would probably be to Trump’s benefit to “do the right thing” and say he won’t nominate anyone until his second term, because the certainty that the winner of the election will get to fill that open seat would likely cause some second thoughts for some GOP voters thinking about defecting.Report

    • Avatar Saul Degraw
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      says:

      Trump is not prudent and McConnell already said he is going to get someone a floor vote.Report

    • Avatar Saul Degraw
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      says:

      Also this is risky too. Keeping the position open gets both sides hoping and activated and even though it is fashionable here to deny it always, Democrats are really motivated this year and RBG’s death only makes it more so. Maybe they lose some Senate seats if they ram someone through but they still get another reactionary firebrand with a lifetime appointment and a 6-3 majority.Report

    • Avatar Stillwater
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      says:

      it would probably be to Trump’s benefit to “do the right thing” and say he won’t nominate anyone until his second term

      Sure, but whether he wins or loses McConnell will hold a confirmation vote before inauguration day.Report

      • Avatar Stillwater
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        And regardless of whether *she* wins or loses, Sen Collins will vote to confirm before inauguration day.Report

        • Avatar InMD
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          I’m not so sure about that. If she wins she has her increasingly tenuous seat to keep defending. If she loses maybe she votes to confirm in a lame duck session as an F you on the way out, or maybe she thinks she has a legacy to protect and decides voting against is the way to do that. Maybe it depends on which action is most likely to appeal to potential employers in a post politics gravy train gig if that’s her next step.Report

          • Avatar North
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            says:

            Yeah when guessing on GOP motives always assume they’ll jank right. If Collins looses she’ll support anyone for the Supreme Court in the lame duck session. She’d be unemployable on the right otherwise.Report

            • Avatar InMD
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              says:

              But does she care? I struggle to see her angling for a show on Fox News.

              Also wondering if this means we should be rooting for her re-election so she has no choice but to deal with the broader considerations. Her Senate seat will be up for grabs again in 6 years, SCOTUS spot could be 30+.Report

              • Avatar North
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                The only way the GOP is ever going to start functioning like a party again is if it gets utterly walloped in elections, preferably starting now. Collins deserves to lose.

                And when the dust settles and that new conservative majority looks our on the political landscape and sees liberal majorities staring unblinkingly back from the Presidency, the Senate, the House and the electorate itself… well we’ll see just how bold they feel like being.Report

              • Avatar Philip H
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                says:

                They don’t care. They have control of the federal judiciary, which means they have long-term control of how laws actually play out. They are also great at being an obstructionist minority party. From their perspective – well the politicians anyway – they win no matter what.Report

    • Avatar Aaron David
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      says:

      ” it would probably be to Trump’s benefit to “do the right thing” and say he won’t nominate anyone until his second term”

      His base would crucify him. To the right, this is the exact situation they elected him for. There are a lot of people who have said they will pinch their nose and vote for him on SCOTUS selections alone. If he doesn’t get someone in front of the senate posthaste, he can kiss reelection goodbye. Whether that person succeeds or fails effecting his reelection is a different matter, but he needs to put up or shut up.Report

      • Avatar InMD
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        I think this is probably what he will do and very likely what he thinks he has to do. It’s definitely his selling point to evangelicals and the remaining MoveCon rump out there. But does this matter to the cross-over upper Midwest Obama voters who gave him his victory last time? I’m not saying one way or another because I really don’t know but he needs both for his path to 270.Report

        • Avatar Aaron David
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          says:

          True, he does need both. But, if he knowingly kicks the legs out from one of those two groups, he is done.

          Really though, it is no different than Obama nominating Garland just before an election. This is his job for at least the next few months.Report

          • Avatar KenB
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            says:

            Interesting discussions… so you’re right, I guess he can’t be the one to decide not to nominate someone.. I suppose the optimal situation for him is to try to get someone through ASAP but to be thwarted by a few moderate Republicans. May not be optimal for them though.Report

  7. Avatar Oscar Gordon
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    says:

    Well…shit.Report

  8. Avatar Chip Daniels
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    says:

    I think the past three years have shown that the Democratic base is looking for fighters, not triangulation or equivocation.

    So we play the cards we have, which is either block a new appointment, or expand the courts.

    Its past time to acknowledge what we are dealing with.Report

  9. Avatar LeeEsq
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    says:

    For me the weirdest thing about the situation is the entire fanbase or if you want to be meaner about it cult that evolved around RBG. From her appointment in 1993 to around 2010 or so, many people either didn’t care about RBG or respected her but didn’t necessarily feel a sense of devotion towards her. In other words, she commanded the same level of acknowledgment and loyalty as any other Supreme Court justice does among the general population. Then something happened and entire fandom with merchandise evolved around her. This was not a politically healthy thing.

    It seems that her dissents started to really resonate with a certain type of person and this resonance combined with the Internet’s meme culture generating power to create the Notorious RBG phenomenon. This led to people who should know better being unable to recognize that like many high status people, RBG is really ambitious. She even said she wasn’t going to retire because no replacement could be as good as her.Report

    • Avatar George Turner
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      Well, some of her hard-core fans are denouncing her for not stepping down while Obama was still President, perhaps similar to the way some Star War fans viciously reacted to Disney bringing Han back just to have his son shove a lightsaber through his chest, or having Luke just phoning it all in. “Who’s writing this?! RGB wasn’t supposed to hand Trump another seat!! How could she do this to us?!”

      It’s the seat that they value. RGB was just a clump of cells.Report

    • Avatar Michael Cain
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      says:

      She began giving interviews and dropping quotable quotes. I believe it was 2012 when she said,

      When I’m sometimes asked when will there be enough [women on the Supreme Court] and I say, ‘When there are nine,’ people are shocked. But there’d been nine men, and nobody’s ever raised a question about that.

      Report

    • Avatar InMD
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      says:

      I’ve always found the weird rock star treatment to be kind of offensive and patronizing. She was a serious jurist. If she was inspirational to women to get into law I think that’s a good thing. Beyond that it was as much of an attack on the legitimacy of the judiciary as the ‘activist judge’ schtick conservatives do.Report

      • Avatar North
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        says:

        The internet has a tendency to shallow everything out, social media doubles this tendency and Twitter specifically compounds it astronomically.Report

      • Avatar Philip H
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        She also inspire senior citizens to exercise, she was a well known patron of opera and theatre, and she and Scalia were personal friends. Her legacy was and remains so much more then her fantastic jurisprudence.Report

      • Avatar LeeEsq
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        says:

        Ginsburg encouraged her rock start treatment, so she didn’t find it that offensive or patronizing. She eventually used it as a reason to justify her decision not to retire.Report

  10. Avatar Philip H
    Ignored
    says:

    my pithy analysis after a weekend of reading and thinking:

    1. McConnell is absolutely and completely comfortable trading the Senate Majority and the White House for a solidly Conservative Supreme Court. He has been leading the GOP to control of the judiciary for years, and will happily whistle into electoral defeat with this accomplished.

    2. His stance derives from 40 plus years of the GOP working to cement conservative, White, rich male rule in the US. He sees all his actions as means to that end, and thus devoid of hypocrisy. Much of the GOP establishment agrees with this. Thus, no matter how many phone calls you make, how many petitions you sign, postcards you send, or demonstrations you staff, he will not change course out of shame.

    3. Those GOP Senators who are unwilling to vote before the election are in that place mostly because they don’t want to trade their personal power for a locked Supreme Court just yet. Mitt Romney aside, should they all loose the election they will most assuredly be willing to vote in the lame duck.

    4. Mark Kelly taking the Arizona seat mucks that up just a bit since he would be sworn in by 30 November.

    5. This is all Harry Reid’s fault, in as much as he nuked the filibuster and 60 vote majority over well played Republican obstruction. He was warned back then that this day would come and didn’t listen. He needs to be picketed as much as McConnell.

    6. While Nancy Pelosi may not want to shut the government down over this, I absolutely want to shut the government down over this. It’s one of the few plays Democrats have to delay. Impeaching Bill Barr would also be a fabulous idea, and richly deserved by him.Report

    • Avatar North
      Ignored
      says:

      #5 If Reid hadn’t done what he’d done then McConnel would have had even more vacancies to fill. If you think McConnel wouldn’t have axed the filibuster if a Dem minority had done to him what he did to them when they were in the majority then I have a bridge to sell you. With that in mind I don’t see how Reid should face much approbation.

      #6: I disagree on this. The party perceived as driving the shut down gets much of the blame. I do not see how Pelosi could shut the government down and win. McConnell would still fill the vacancy if the government was shut down and he’d do it while laughing because shut down politics could well hand him the Presidency and a Senate majority for the next cycle as a cherry on top.Report

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