History will correct the headlines on Gorsuch

April 9, 2017

Barring a real nuclear option by China, Russia, North Korea or some ISIS nut job, by the time you read this column Neal Gorsuch will have become the newest Associate Justice of the United States Supreme Court.

If you’re a Gorsuch supporter it’s the first step forward towards setting the Court back on a path to the constitutional restraints the Founders intended.

If you’re a Gorusch hater it’s the end of the world for women, children, grandma’s and grandpa’s, the poor, the sick, minorities of all races, cats, dogs, parakeets, squirrels and pet ferrets everywhere; A free pass for white, heterosexual males along with the greedy, blood sucking corporations that they run to kill as they please and pollute the planet into oblivion.

Yes, our political chasm is that wide, that deep.

The Bloomberg Politics headline Thursday blared: “Senate Republicans Unleash Nuclear Option for Gorsuch……Senate Republicans Force Historic Rule Change to Advance Gorsuch”.

The opening paragraph was even more dire: “Senate Republicans ignited the “nuclear option” to allow confirmation of President Donald Trump’s U.S. Supreme Court nominee and bar Democrats from blocking future picks, a dramatic rule change that could deepen partisan divisions and put more ideologically extreme justices on the court.”

Not until the nineteenth paragraph is there a one sentence reference to Harry Reid’s 2013 blowing up Senate rules to further then President Obama’s picks for lower court nominees.

And that one sentence didn’t come even close to putting in context the step by partisan step that Democrats have been taking for over two decades that finally brought us to this decisive moment.

From Joe Biden taking the first step in 1992 arguing that President George H.W. Bush should not nominate and the Senate should not confirm a Supreme Court Justice in the last year of his term, to the Democrats initiating the practice of filibustering lower court nominees in 2003 with the denial of Bush nominee Miguel Estrada, to then majority leader Harry Reid denying the same right to the Republican minority of the time when in 2013 he orchestrated the change in rules to require but a simple majority for all Presidential nominations except a Supreme Court vacancy.

Neil Gorsuch is as qualified a jurist for the Supreme Court as could ever be nominated by a President of any political party. So qualified that even the American Bar Association, hardly a bulwark of political conservatism, gave Mr. Gorsuch its best rating of “well-qualified” to serve on the Supreme Court.

So it’s not irrational to ask the question: How in the world did we get here?

The answer as this columnist sees it is that while there are many excuses: party politics, special interest money, too many safe districts for incumbents, there is only one reason: US.

US as in “We the People”, as in an apathetic, ill informed, self-absorbed populace more worried about Facebook likes and Kardashian hook ups, than the rule of law and respect for the Constitution.

US as in a country that can elect the likes of a Kamela Harris (D, CA) to the Senate who doesn’t think twice before tweeting out that “Judge Gorsuch has consistently valued legalisms over real lives. I won’t support his nomination.” The message abundantly clear: Judge Gorsuch dares to put the law above ideology and today’s Democrat party cannot survive without justices willing to legislate from the bench ergo he must not be allowed on the bench.

There was absolutely no need for the drama, the posturing, the pathetic that we were forced to witness these last days of the Gorsuch nomination. Turning what was once referred to as “the world’s greatest deliberative body” into the political version of Friday night mud wrestling at the local strip club.

The headlines may scream “Republicans blew up the Senate” today, but I have no doubt that the calmer hand of history will record that on April 6, 2017, after weeks of posturing and threatening, Chuck Schumer glibly led his Democrats and the Senate to the brink only to discover that when they got there, Mitch McConnell refused to blink.

When, or if, this perpetual feud ever ends, is sadly anyone’s guess.  But in the end, the Founder’s wisdom has once again prevailed.  The Constitution still stands, the sun still rises in the East, and even Congress can’t screw that up.

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