One Great Graf: What Obama’s SCOTUS Pick Says About Him

Why’d He Pick That Guy?

The [Merrick] Garland nomination also revealed the President’s distaste for the vulgar realities of politics. A Supreme Court vacancy gave Obama a chance to inject himself into this year’s elections on his own terms. He could have chosen a nominee who would rally his core supporters, and thus assist his party in races up and down the ballot. The Administration’s short list for the nomination reportedly included several respected appellate-court judges who might have had considerable popular appeal; there was a woman (Jane Kelly), an African-American (Paul Watford), and a member of a small but growing immigrant group (Sri Srinivasan, an Indian-American). But this President prefers technocrats to Democrats. It is true, at some level, that good policy is good politics; but good politics is also good politics. The underlying political rationale for the Garland nomination appears to be that if this sober and reasonable choice is right for the President it will be right for his party as well.” — Jeffrey Toobin, the New Yorker

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