Today, President Barack Obama fulfilled his constitutional duty to appoint an individual to the United States Supreme Court. In our system of government the Supreme Court is supposed to allow the recipient of the nomination to be on a court where politics should not be a consideration. It is a lifetime appointment, where ones qualifications to be a good judge should be the criteria, not whether the person fits some kind of ideological litmus test. What matters is whether or not the judge nominated is qualified. Judge Garland is imminently qualified to be a Supreme Court Justice. There is not doubt that Judge Garland meets the requirements of what a good judge would be, and his nomination should proceed with due respect and seriousness befitting the courts position in our system of governance.
The attitude of the majority leader of the Senate is antithetical to the original intent of the founders by making a decision to not even consider the nomination. It may not be expressly written that a nominee must be given a fair hearing but that is because it has been understood since the Court was established that the President of the United States has a constitutional duty to appoint a nominee and the Senate of the United States has a Constitutional duty to give the nominee a fair hearing.
There was a time when the court and the nomination process was above political consideration, and we should return to that view. Mitch McConnell’s position is that the election should take place before the nomination would be considered. His position throws history on its head, and endangers the court in the process by even making it more of a political football than it is.
What if a Democrat wins the election. One could take McConnell’s logic even further and not accept any nomination of any Democratic President because McConnell does not like the result.
This particular nominee, Judge Garland is not the issue, Republicans say. After all he is considered a moderate, and Judge Garland is known for his ability as a Judge. He realizes that a Justice is not to legislate from the bench. So what is the problem?
On eight occasions a judge has been nominated and confirmed during the last year of his Presidency. It would appear that it is only because it is this President and the fact that this nominee will succeed Scalia. This is nothing but a tempest in a teapot, where McConnell realizes that the composition of the court will change for the next 30 years. Well, these things happen, life alters what one might have wished. It is not President Obama’s fault that Scalia died on his watch.
Obstructionism needs to end. For the good of the court and of the nation, let the nomination go forward.