Mitt Romney said yesterday that he would join Grim Reaper McConnell in supporting whoever Trump nominates to the Supreme Court, despite having voted to impeach and remove Trump less than eight months ago. So much for integrity or scruples.
Lindsey Graham is now claiming that the Senate Trumpublicans have the votes to affirm Trump’s eventual nominee. It appears that Senators Collins and Murkowski were allowed to go against McConnell only because they needed the political cover and he didn’t need their votes. Senator Schumer last night pleaded with Americans to bombard their Republican senators and urge them to reject a rushed SCOTUS nominee, hoping that one or two might defect, but his plan is a long-shot at best. Democratic Senators have some limited stalling tactics available that might delay McConnell’s process and it would be a huge win just to be able to delay a new justice until after the election but it’s hard to see how Schumer and the Democrats can accomplish even this modest goal.
Trump desperately wants to seat a new justice because he knows he’s likely to lose the election and he’s planning on contesting the results and litigating the outcome–trashing our 244-year history of a peaceful transition of power, a hallmark of our democracy. Trump’s constant lying about mail-in voter fraud is laying the groundwork for de-legitimizing the voting results and he needs a Supreme Court that will somehow validate whatever his legal theories turn out to be. They may be something as lame as “so unfair, I’m a victim, the democrats are being mean to me,” or they might be a challenge to the state statutes that form the ballot-counting processes and procedures, or both. But the justices that he calls “his” may or may not rule in his favor, regardless of whether he’s able to replace Ginsburg. Overturning Roe v. Wade is one thing, but acquiescing to authoritarian dictatorship is another, especially when it’s completely apart from or inconsistent with the Constitution.
Yesterday I suggested that Trump might nominate Florida Judge Barbara Lagoa, which could help him with the Latino vote in that state. But reporting later claimed that his current favorite is Judge Amy Coney Barrett, who’s been serving on the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals for just under three years. Barrett has a solid legal background, and conservatives love her because she’s been outspoken about legal positions they embrace, such as stridently opposing abortion rights. But she’s also a religious fundamentalist who belongs to a cult. No kidding. That’s how some former members describe it. Barrett is a life-long Catholic who long ago joined a group called “People of Praise.” Here’s what Sarah Midkiff of Refinery29 wrote about them:
The group believes in a number of Pentecostal staples such as prophecy, speaking in tongues, and divine healings. Founded in 1971, the community remains quite small, claiming about 1,800 adult members across North America, reports the New York Times. Though roughly 90 percent of members identify as Catholic, there are a number of doctrinal deviations. For one, members of the group swear a lifelong oath of loyalty to one another and are assigned a personal adviser to whom they are held accountable. For men, this adviser is called a “head,” and for women, a “handmaid.” People of Praise preaches the idea that men are the authority figure over the family including their wives.Sarah Midkiff, Refinery29
Margaret Atwood, who wrote A Handmaid’s Tale, based her book on several religious communities and People of Praise may have been one of them. Regardless, it’s chilling that a woman who swears an oath of loyalty to a religious order that includes men being the authority figures in all families could be the person to replace Justice Ginsburg, a towering champion of women’s equality and liberation. It’s also chilling to wonder whether Barrett would put her loyalty to the Bible above her loyalty to the law or the Constitution.
Barrett is not only against abortion, but she’s also against the Affordable Care Act, so her elevation to the Supreme Court would further the likelihood that the entire Act is thrown out when it comes before the court this November. For these and many other reasons, we need to make sure Democrats in Congress are doing whatever they can to slow the process down, and we also need to do whatever WE can to help elect Democratic senators in six weeks. At the very least, if we can take the Senate and the White House we need to expand the court immediately and thwart McConnell’s grand judicial project. Minority rule is not Democracy.
Please make sure you are registered to vote, and please formulate your voting plan as well as a backup plan. You can be sure that all the Trumpers in our area will be voting this November so we have to make sure we get our voters to the polls and not only help to defeat Trump but also help to keep Antonio Delgado in Washington.
Keep resising Trump and keep working to “vote his ass out of office.”