Patterico's Pontifications


Obama Administration Lawyer: “Why Liberals Should Back Neil Gorsuch” (Plus Bonus Elizabeth Warren Nonsense)

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 8:30 pm

There’s at least one honest man among the left in this world, and he supports Neil Gorsuch for the Supreme Court:

I was an acting solicitor general for President Barack Obama; Judge Gorsuch has strong conservative bona fides and was appointed to the 10th Circuit by President George W. Bush. But I have seen him up close and in action, both in court and on the Federal Appellate Rules Committee (where both of us serve); he brings a sense of fairness and decency to the job, and a temperament that suits the nation’s highest court.

Considerable doubts about the direction of the Supreme Court have emerged among Democrats in recent weeks, particularly given some of the names that have been floated by the administration for possible nomination. With environmental protection, reproductive rights, privacy, executive power and the rights of criminal defendants (including the death penalty) on the court’s docket, the stakes are tremendous. I, for one, wish it were a Democrat choosing the next justice. But since that is not to be, one basic criterion should be paramount: Is the nominee someone who will stand up for the rule of law and say no to a president or Congress that strays beyond the Constitution and laws?

I have no doubt that if confirmed, Judge Gorsuch would help to restore confidence in the rule of law. His years on the bench reveal a commitment to judicial independence — a record that should give the American people confidence that he will not compromise principle to favor the president who appointed him.

There are also dishonest people among the left — a lot of them. For a hint of the type of claptrap we’ll see in coming days, check out Elizabeth “Pocahontas” Warren:

Before even joining the bench, he advocated to make it easier for public companies to defraud investors. As a judge, he has twisted himself into a pretzel to make sure the rules favor giant companies over workers and individual Americans. He has sided with employers who deny wages, improperly fire workers, or retaliate against whistleblowers for misconduct. He has ruled against workers in all manner of discrimination cases. And he has demonstrated hostility toward women’s access to basic health care.

Blah, blah, blah. It goes on like that. These Native Americans do drone on, don’t they?

Guess what? She is going to lose. So don’t be angry at her. Laugh at her. Point, and laugh.

[Cross-posted at RedState and The Jury Talks Back.]

President Trump Nominates Neil Gorsuch!

Filed under: General — Dana @ 5:17 pm

[guest post by Dana]

The best news for Conservatives.

While Democrats are promising a vigorous battle, now is the time to savor the moment.



Tonight, I am proud of President Trump, without reservation. If I may plagiarize myself from a recent post:

In many ways, Gorsuch is the ideal successor to Scalia, as he shares many of Scalia’s attributes. He is an engaging and entertaining writer. He is an originalist, which is the only legitimate method of constitutional interpretation — but one that Scalia did much to make respectable. Gorsuch is an ardent textualist, like Scalia, and shares Scalia’s disdain for a reliance on fickle and often misleading legislative history.

I listened to Trump’s and Gorsuch’s remarks on my drive home, and was impressed by each. Listening to Gorsuch talk of how he clerked for Byron White and Anthony Kennedy (after Justice White retired) reminded me that I was at the Court for Justice White’s last day on the Court. Mrs. P. and I had prime seats, and today I realize that I was probably sitting only feet away from future Justice Gorsuch that day.

To those who got on my case for failing to predict the outcome of the election, let me remind you of two things. First: a lot of you thought the GOP was going to cave on Merrick Garland. I said they wouldn’t — and they didn’t. And to the more extreme of the NeverTrumpers: many of you said Trump would be horrible on Supreme Court nominations. I said I thought he would be very good — and he was.

I’ve rarely been more pleased to have two of my predictions turn out to be correct.

Always Generally trust content from Patterico.

What a great day for America.

— P




[Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.]

Democrats May Be Backing off Threat to Filibuster Any Trump Supreme Court Nominee

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 9:00 am

Yesterday, Senator Jeff Merkley of Oregon made the oafish announcement that he planned to filibuster President Trump’s Supreme Court pick, no matter who it was. Speculation ran rampant on the right that this was part of a larger plan by the Democrat Senate leadership. If so, they may be reconsidering:

Senate Democrats are weighing whether to avoid an all-out war to block President Donald Trump’s upcoming Supreme Court pick, instead considering delaying that battle for a future nomination that could shift the ideological balance of the court, sources say.

Democrats privately discussed their tactics during a closed-door retreat in West Virginia last week. And a number of Democrats are trying to persuade liberal firebrands to essentially let Republicans confirm Trump’s pick after a vigorous confirmation process — since Trump is likely to name a conservative to replace the late conservative Justice Antonin Scalia.

The reason for the tactic: Republicans are considering gutting the filibuster for Supreme Court nominees if Democrats stay largely united and block Trump’s first pick. By employing the so-called “nuclear option,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell could move to reduce the threshold for clearing a filibuster from 60 votes to 51 votes.

That would mean Democrats could lose leverage in the next Supreme Court fight if Trump were to replace a more liberal justice, since the GOP now has 52 seats in the Senate.

Of course, this may just be a move to undo the rhetorical damage from Merkley’s ham-handed declaration. This way, now they can pretend that their filibuster was really because this particular nominee (read: anyone Trump names) was just so, so extreme!

It really is the wrong time for Democrats to go ballistic. Justice Scalia was one of the most conservative justices in decades. No matter who Trump names, it will maintain the balance of power that has existed for years — one that has brought plenty of victories for the left. Sure, the left would like to make some gains, but you have to win a Presidency and some Senate races to do that, don’t you?

Given Mitch McConnell’s recent unwise declaration that the nuclear option is off the table, the Democrats’ decision whether to filibuster the nominee announced today will be very consequential.

[Cross-posted at RedState and The Jury Talks Back, the only place where I will be commenting on this post.]

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