The mess itself is not over but the possibility of defeating the nomination died this morning when, predictably, the Senator from Arizona flaked out. There are a few holding out hope that Collins and Murkowski remain undecided but I am no longer among them. Absent a miracle, the confirmation fight is over.
There were several reports last night that a “gang of four” including the aforementioned GOPers and Joe Manchin plan to vote as a bloc. The first time I saw that I knew that Judge Bro would be promoted to Justice Bro. I feel sorry for the three women justices and even sorrier for the country.
Nothing that Judiciary Committee Democrats did or said yesterday mattered. The Senate has been fundamentally changed by Mitch McConnell, what the minority thinks no longer matters.
The fact that the American Bar Association wants an investigation does not matter either. Angry white men want one of their own on SCOTUS and they will get their wish.
The fact that Republicans applied criminal law standards of corroboration and reasonable doubt to what is really a job interview shows that they followed the Thomas-Hill playbook. The only difference was that Senators did not yell at Christine Blasey Ford. They let Brett Kavanaugh and Lindsey Graham do the yelling instead.
I’m feeling alternately angry and numb this morning. I put a lot into covering this story. I made the mistake of thinking that Senate Republicans would act like rational politicians looking at the next election. Instead, they put all their chips on promoting Judge Bro to the Supreme Court. The voters need to make them pay for their short-sighted thinking.
Even though yesterday’s hearing was as much Kabuki theatre as Kangaroo court, Michael F provided me with an alternate image. I hate to waste such generosity. Here’s the earless version:
The last word goes to Roy Orbison. We could all use some beauty in our lives right now even if it comes from a sad song.
UPDATE: As of 1:45 CST, Senators Flake and Murkowski are withholding an aye vote on the nomination unless there’s a one-week long FBI investigation. That’s my current understanding but the situation is FLUID and CONFUSING. It’s up to the White House to re-open the background check.
3 thoughts on “The Kavanaugh Mess: It’s Over (Not Quite)”
Today I feel almost like I did the night of election day 2016. Depressed, defeated and disgusted.
Thanks again for the shout out. For fun I might see what I can do re: Kabuki theater. I’ve got something already that could be slightly modified.
As for the sorry spectacle, well, shit. It’s never fun to lose, since it’s not just a game. We’ll pay a steep price for a long time with Justice Bro tipping the scale.
I won’t hold out much hope, because this ALWAYS happens — goddamn — but I wish like all hell would-be Democratic voters would think about things like this before deciding to heighten the contradictions/cast a vanity vote/or not vote at all.
This situation presents a difficult political calculus. I see it as a long game. Yes, Kavanaugh is toxic. Yes, he will motivate women, and at least some of my fellow men, to vote against Republicans who supported his elevation. Yes, it could have terrible electoral consequences in November.
But this high school nightmare (and we all know this guy, we know exactly who he is and of what he is capable – and not) is going to be elevated to the position of high priest, erm, justice, where he will sit for 30 years. Through 5 Senates. Through 7, maybe 8, Presidencies and 15 Congresses, or more. This shouty, emotional, redundant and inarticulate thing from some otherworldly hellscape will be there, until I am an old man.
He will be a consistent vote in the Majority against universal health care, women, minorities, immigrants, taxation, the environment, children, debtors, the poor, the old, the ill and the ill-treated. He will be a bludgeon and a bulwark against any form of progress – 1/5 of a permanent Veto of all things that the very best of us can push through the meat-grinder of Congress and the Senate, State Legislatures, County Commissions,City Councils and neighborhood associations. And what Lindsey Graham understands – sure, he might lose his seat over this. Grassley might die in ignominy and urine may flow like great rivers ‘twixt the teeth in the skeletal grin of his rotted corpse – but mission fucking accomplished. If the Notorious RBG retires, at this point, it won’t really matter. It is a fair question whether the Supremes will allow a Democratic victory via Electoral College again. It is a fair question whether there will be less gerrymandering without SCOTUS intervention.
When he dons the robe and takes his seat, what is left of the Republican Party (oh, and the will be back by Easter) is going to make us work to ensure that a lefty Democrat controls the White House AND the Senate for every single god-be-damned special, general and primary election until I am 75 fucking years old. Not only that, but we are going to have earn every single District Court, State’s AG and every office to dog catcher to have a chance of 1) preventing cases from being heard by the Supremes, and 2) while he waits for every opportunity to rule against us. How the fuck do you appeal a SCOTUS decision? We couldn’t even change the Constitution int he 1970s to say that ‘women are people.’ Nothing an ‘R’ Statehouse does is going to be UnConstitutional, while EVERYTHING a Dem Lege does will be thrown out. Good luck with that Cali, Washington, Illinois and NY. Welcome to Alabama/Idaho.
How do you stop someone appealing a case all of the way to the Supreme Court?
And yet, we will still have elections, and they will be contested, and we know that they will be heard by the Supremes – just to fucking own us.
Graham and Grassley and Flake and Cruz and whomever the fuck you want to name – sure, they might lose in November, but they have just done to us what Brett Kavanaugh and his friends did to countless unnamed girls in high school.
Sorry, but fuck.
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