Republicans used the “nuclear option” and dismantled the Senate rule requiring 60 votes to confirm a Supreme Court nomination. These seats are lifetime appointments so they are very important to get right. Last year, after Justice Andrew Scalia died, President Obama should have been allowed to nominate and confirm the next justice. It was his privilege as the President to do so. His nominee, Marrick Garland, didn’t even get a hearing. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R) said, “The schedule in the Senate is set by the majority leader. And most of my members are very comfortable with letting the American people make this decision by electing the next president, who will fill this vacancy next year.” Yesterday McConnell changed Senate rules that will have a lasting impact on our lives. It will change our democracy. The Republican held Senate voted to make a majority rule when it comes to judicial nominees. In the past the 60 vote minimum forced the two parties to work together. To come to a consensus pick and then a conclusion. This was possibly our last hope of real bipartisanship. This did not happen this time. Republicans did not seek ideas from across the aisle nor did they care about the common tradition of our government.
I would like to look into our crystal ball and guess what could and will likely happen in the future. If Democrats win the midterm elections and take the majority of the Senate, what will happen if another justice passes away, this time during President Trump’s term? Are Democrats going to vote to confirm a conservative judge while a Republican is in office? I don’t think so and I hope not. It would be political suicide. Not only do they not have to confirm a judge but their constituents wouldn’t want them to. They wouldn’t even have to schedule a hearing for the next nominee! McConnell and the other conservatives set the precedent. No opposite party nominees should/will get approved. Same thing when a Democrat is in the Oval Office and Republicans have the majority. Of course I probably am wrong. This entire shit show wasn’t about Neil Gorsuch anyway. It was about the pettiness of Republican party. There hasn’t been a Democratic president able to get a Supreme Court pick confirmed under a Republican held Senate since Grove Cleveland in 1895. Not one. In contrast, Republican presidents working with Democratic held Senates have confirmed 12 nominees.
Conservatives love to preach about being conservative except when they aren’t. Breaking tradition. Changing Rules. Obstructionist. Restricting individual freedom and privacy. Not playing by the rules. Destabilizing government institutions. Yep, real conservative, Conservative.
*Do not believe that this “nuclear option” was in retaliation for when Harry Reid (D) used the “nuclear option” to pass Obama’s cabinet appointments. There were 86 filibustered nominees for all presidents combined before Obama. Republicans had blocked 82 of his nominees. Reid wanted to get Obama his appointees and needed to for the sake of the government. Likewise, Mr. Trump hasn’t nominated anyone for hundreds of positions yet.