How the Election of 2020 Will Alter the Supreme Court and Why it Matters
The upcoming Presidential Election of 2020 has numerous policies at stake. With the recent news of the SCOTUS blocking the Trump Administration’s plans of ending DACA, the Supreme Court has made its way into recent political debate and conversation. That being said, a major crisis facing the United States is the future of the Supreme Court. One of the most impactful choices that any President has to make is the decision of who to nominate to the lifetime position as a Judge on the Supreme Court. Within the three branches of government — legislative, executive, and judicial — the judicial branch is the only branch with lifetime appointments.
The very process by which justices are nominated has also been jeopardized. In 2016, former President Obama nominated Merrick Garland to the Supreme Court after the death of former Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia. Merrick Garland was Chief Judge to the U.S Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit and was a very well respected and admired official, who judged fairly without being affected by political theatre. However, Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell blocked President Obama’s nomination from even having a vote or a hearing to be appointed to the SCOTUS.
This wasn’t the only time partisan ties have affected the judicial system: during the Obama Administration, the GOP blocked Obama’s attempts to nominate the three vacancies in the U.S. Court of Appeals-D.C. Circuit in order to keep the Courts from gaining a Democratic majority. Mitch McConnell’s defense of these attacks on the judicial system have been short to give a conclusive purpose for blocking the appointment of Judges.
In 2016, McConnell stated in response to blocking President Obama’s SCOTUS pick, “The American people may very elect a President who decides to nominate Judge Garland for Senate consideration, the next President may also nominate someone very different.”
McConnell’s true reason for blocking the nomination was a political one; it is evident he blocked the nomination in order to block the courts from having another democratic judge. This political strategy was put in place in hopes that a Republican candidate would win the presidential election of 2016 resulting with the new POTUS electing a Conservative to the Supreme Court. The GOP is corrupting the nomination of the judicial system and McConnell has been using Donald Trump to do so.
President Donald Trump has nominated various conservative judges, with his infamous choice of Nominating Judge Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court. This was a major defeat for progressive American ideals and the competencies needed in court.
There is more than policy at stake in this election: Trump’s rhetoric has endangered the very ideals of American democracy. The Supreme Court lacks true representation and this will continue to worsen if Donald Trump is re-elected. Not only are Trump’s ideas on the Courts dangerous, but his racial comments are alarming. In 2016, Trump said that federal judge Gonzalo Curiel would not be a functional judge because of his Mexican heritage.
A transcript with CNN’s reporter Jake Tapper and Trump on his controversial comments regarding judge Curiel show alarming judgement from Trump, who says in the transcript, “I’ve had ruling after ruling after ruling that’s been bad rulings, okay? I’ve been treated very unfairly. Before him, we had another judge. If that judge was still there, this case would have been over two years ago. Let me just tell you, I’ve had horrible rulings, I’ve been treated very unfairly by this judge. Now, this judge is of Mexican heritage. I’m building a wall, okay? I’m building a wall.”
It is important that Progressives support Joe Biden for President even if they are far to the left of him [Biden]. Joe Biden may not support a single payer healthcare system proposed by Bernie Sanders or other progressive ideals, but some Progressives forget to take into account the importance of the SCOTUS. If Donald Trump gains the power to nominate more Supreme Court Judges in the next four years the consequences will not just affect our generation; it will affect the policies of the United States for decades.
Leaders of the GOP [McConnell] have been corrupting the Courts and the system of nominating Judges. A Trump presidency will normalize this miscarriage of justice, but a Biden presidency would help expose the corruption of this nature. A Biden administration would stabilize the Courts that way a fair and just system can begin.