Four years ago Mitch McConnell made up a rule out of the blue about Supreme Court nominations in an election year. He claimed it was Senate precedent (he lied). It was an unconstitutional and naked power grab that resulted in the Republican party stealing a Supreme Court nomination from a sitting president. It was even more transparently corrupt given the fact that Republicans even talked about refusing to take up any Democrat nomination for the next 4 or 8 years if Hillary won the election. Republicans have been carving a perilously corrupt path through American politics for decades, but this display was the one that finally made clear for all the world to see that they have zero interest in America — their only interest lies in their own power, and abusing it.
Now, four years later we get further confirmation of their hypocrisy, corruption, and disinterest in America and its Democracy.
In 2016 McConnell’s made-up rule stated that Supreme Court nominations will not be considered by the Senate during election years, and so they denied Obama’s SCOTUS nomination for a full 10 months while he was in office. Now in 2020, McConnell and seemingly 51 out of 53 Republican Senators are preparing to ram a SCOTUS confirmation through the Senate as quickly as possible in order to get another conservative justice on the Supreme Court. This year the court seat opened up seven months later than it did in 2016. Hypocrisy in American government has never been so brazen and crystal clear as it is today in the Republican party.
And of course, Republicans will once again get away with this treachery. As we have all become plainly aware of these past four years, the Constitution set up a government that works well when elected officials act in good faith. We now have one of the two parties who ONLY act in bad faith. The Constitution simply does not describe a system to protect America from this condition. Just as Trump has committed numerous heinous crimes against America and brought the White House to a level of total corruption that would have been unthinkable four years ago, and got off scot-free because his entire party acts in bad faith to protect only itself, so too will Republicans get away with this second Supreme Court treachery simply because they can.
The Constitution forbade them from doing what they did in 2016, but McConnell said he was creating a new precedent because the Constitution provided no legal recourse to actually stop him. Now he is throwing his own precedent to the wind simply because he can because once again the Constitution provides no legal recourse to actually stop him. The Constitution relies on actual people in the majority to do the right thing, but when bad people hold the majority we now see they can literally get away with anything.
To make sure there could be no doubt about Republican’s hypocrisy, Lindsay Graham left us this fine quote in 2016:
“If there’s a Republican president in 2016 and a vacancy occurs in the last year of the first term, you can say Lindsey Graham said let’s let the next president, whoever it might be, make that nomination. And you could use my words against me, and you’d be absolutely right.” — Lindsay Graham, March 10, 2016
But Graham’s own words, he and the rest of Republicans are doing what’s wrong.
Republicans, after unconstitutionally and corruptly stealing a Supreme Court nomination from President Obama, are now about to jam a Supreme Court pick through the Senate as fast as possible, knowing that Biden is very likely to be president in just four months, and the president-elect in just over a month, completely breaking the precedent they were claiming they were creating in 2016.
They will get away with this. They have no interest in abiding by precedents, laws, or the constitution. Literally the only thing they are about is their own power. History books tell us this is what will destroy us. The only way to hold them accountable is to vote them out of office in November and make sure they are the minority party for decades to come. Make no mistake, they have embarked upon a plan in which they will never allow a Democratic president to pick a Supreme Court justice if Republicans have the Senate — they have broken the Constitution.
For a long time Republicans have told us not to trust government and that government is corrupt — this whole time they were just telling us what government will eventually be, and now is, under Republican control. If you don’t like corrupt government, if you don’t like your elected officials lying to you, if you don’t like your elected officials acting as a completely lawless body with the single purpose of gaining permanent power over you and the levers of government, if you don’t like the idea of America’s descent into fascism that we have seen under Trump, the only chance we as America have is to vote Democratic from top to bottom in this election and every future election.