For John, BLUF: I wonder if former Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid ever regrets changing the rules for confirming judges? Nothing to see here; just move along.
From the Althouse blog, 27 June 2018.
Here is the lede plus two:
I was so sure there would be no retirement announcement today. I think the Justices cling to the bench until Death calls for a vacancy. But no. Kennedy retires, and he retires in time for Trump to nominate someone who can be confirmed before the next election works its will on the Senate.OK, don't get distracted by the question of why Professor Althouse was driving 100+ miles. The issue is Justice Kennedy and his retirement. And the reaction of the Democrats.
I was away from the blog — driving 100+ miles — but that did give me the opportunity to listen to the cable news channels (via satellite radio) far more than I'd ever put up with them if I were home and in a position to read and write. TV news is such as waste of time. Kennedy was the swing vote, and lawyers fine-tuned their arguments for him. I heard that over and over, with virtually no critical opinion about whether it was bad to have years of key Supreme Court decisions determined by the quirks of one human mind.
But that wasn't the main topic. The main topic — over and over again — was whether the Democratic Senators had any chance to delay the vote on the nominee until after the 2018 elections, which might give Democrats a majority in the Senate. I didn't hear anyone talking about whether a post-election vote on the nominee would help the Democratic Party win the Senate majority.
I think it would not.nbsp; Voters tend to agree with the GOP's idea of what makes a good Justice — basically, judicial restraint. I don't think it will help Democrats in the elections to be saying give us the majority so we can block Trump's nominee (who will be a specific person, with great credentials, and an originalist, nonactivist judicial philosophy). They'll be better off if the vote has already happened and they can forefront other issues.
I realize that the Democrats believe their bi-coastal majority plurality should give them control of Congress (and the White House), but that is not how the US Constitution is set up. It is designed to let each of the States feel it is a player, at least to some degree.♠ Otherwise, why be in the union.
Hat tip to the InstaPundit.
Regards — Cliff
♠ Which is why the change in the Greater Lowell Technical High School voting for School Committee was an example of doctrine over common sense.