Who Has the Math?

Is John McCain alive or dead?  If alive, can he vote?  Which way would he vote?  After all he does love to spoil things.  Assuming he will not be a factor, is Susan Collins the weak link?  If she is, can she be persuaded?  Is she up for re-election?  What other republican votes are question marks?  Could Manchin from West Virginia be convinced to vote against his party?  If we don’t have the votes how likely is it that the mid-terms will increase the Republican Senate Majority?  Should we try now and then after the mid-terms?

These are a few of the question that would need to be answered before trying to figure out if and/or when a conservative justice could get through the Senate.

And the other big question is whether Roberts is a ringer.  Does he need to be outvoted too?  If that’s the case we’ll need Ginsberg to go too.

So, as with all things Washingtonian, there are wheels within wheels and waiting is an integral part of the game.  But so far Trump has a pretty good track record of getting the luck.  If he gets a good man in then we can hope to know the answer to some of the Roberts questions pretty quickly.  And if Roberts does turn out to be a ringer that’ll be just one more reason to distrust all things Bush and celebrate dodging the JEB! bullet almost as much as the Hillary one.

So, my guess, McConnell will spend a little time doing his math and making sure he completely understands the dynamic.  Now that he and President Trump have normalized their relationship I expect they’ll coordinate carefully on the when and the how.  They may spring it pretty quickly when it’s time and not give the Media or the Dems a lot of time to screech.  McConnell indicated the vote would be in the fall.  Maybe that’s a ruse.  Maybe they’ll surprise everyone and do it before Labor Day.  I’m not an expert on the machinery of the Senate so I don’t know how likely that is.  My guess is McCain may be an important piece of the puzzle.  His wife is touted to be in line for the job when he dies.  How this affects the vote is anybody’s guess but my bet is that she’s a lib.  For that reason, they may not wait for her to be seated.

Okay, so that’s the horse race.  Now, why is this so damn important?  Well, because if Roberts isn’t a ringer and we get another Gorsuch or Alito then we will have the first conservative Supreme Court since before I was born.  In fact, we haven’t had a truly conservative Supreme Court in over a hundred years.  Can you imagine if SCOTUS decides that all the Constitutional mandates that the activists judges have discovered over the last fifty years (abortion, gay rights, gay marriage, affirmative action, federal encroachment on States’ Rights, assaults on the First and Second Amendments) are not?  And instead throws these decisions back to the states to decide?  That would be a revolution.  It would mean that instead of one homogeneous culture there would be several.  And that might be the beginning of a great unraveling.  Or it might be the occasion for a rethinking of many policies that were thrust onto the people from above by an elite that thought it was the best and the brightest and therefore ought to prevail against the will of the people.  In places like Texas, Utah and the Old South more conservative populations would be allowed to live the way they wanted without the federal government harassing and scolding them for their values.  To my mind that would come very close to restoring America to its essential virtue, a place where you are free to live the way you want without the government constantly interfering.  And that sounds more or less like heaven to me.  So, here’s hoping the math works out.  Let’s hope the final sum is a positive.  I’m tired of negative.

 

Kennedy Allows That the First Amendment Still Somewhat Exists and Finds for the Colorado Wedding Baker

Reading the decision, it’s the most wishy-washy defense of religious freedom to ever come out of the Supreme Court.  Well at least it’s a start.  Now if he’ll just have the decency of retiring we can put a real conservative in and get some actual justice for this country.

 

Update:

In honor of this decision I will link here to my Trump vs Justice Kennedy homage.  Boy, I hope Kennedy resigns this month.

How Will Affirmative Action End?

For many people on the right wing, Supreme Court appointments are the highest priority for the Trump to-do list.  Gorsuch was the first act of that play.  But what they really want is a clear majority of socially conservative justices willing to act on issues where unconstitutional policy has been imposed on the country.  High on that list are the moral outrages of abortion and so-called homosexual marriage.  But at the very top of the list of unconstitutional policies that damage American life is affirmative action.  Here are a laundry list of protected classes ranging from half the population (women) to all non-white populations, to homosexuals and other deviants who only share one thing in common, they are not normal white men.  These groups are provided the coercive force of the federal and/or state government to gain preference in employment, housing and education.  And lately the sexual orientation and gender identity protected statuses are being used to dictate everything from who can be a boy scout to who can use a bathroom reserved for women.  But the truth of these laws is that they should really be called what they are.  They should be called Legalized Discrimination against Normal White Men.  Because this is the only group that is systematically discriminated against by every one of these policies.  An attempt to do this against any other group would be challenged legally and morally condemned.  But normal white men are undefended and in fact assumed to be unworthy of receiving the universal fairness that the left demands for every other group.

I am not an expert at how the Court system works.  What I think happens is some lower Court adjudicates some case that contradicts a Federal law.  If the lower court agrees with the existing law and finds against a plaintiff or defendant on the other side of this precedent then he has the right to appeal to a higher level of the federal court structure.  And if this continues, eventually it can reach the Supreme Court.  The decision of the Supreme Court is considered final and can even overturn a federal law if the Supreme Court finds it unconstitutional as happened with the Defense of Marriage Act.  That was Justice Kennedy’s handiwork.

How I would see affirmative action overturned will be when some white man is discriminated against because of one of these policies and he gets his day in court and a majority of Supreme Court Justices says enough is enough.  Once the whole range of affirmative action policies are looked at it will be easy to justify their complete dismantling based on the very question of fairness that the left is always trumpeting.  The only question I’m not sure about is whether the Court will decide to phase out these policies or just end them outright.  I can foresee an enormous legal and bureaucratic endeavor to strip out all the affirmative action policies scattered throughout the federal and state statutes and government policy documents.

But none of this can happen until one of the sitting left-leaning Supreme Court Justices retires (or passes away) and there exists a conservative President and Senate to put a conservative appointee on the Supreme Court bench.  I have to confess this is one of the things I wait for most impatiently.  And as much as I’d like to see Kennedy go, I’d prefer it was Bader-Ginsburg or Breyer.  Kennedy’s bad but he is alright on the non-social issues.  I can wait for him to go next.

Trump vs Justice Kennedy

Scene 1: White House, West Wing

President Trump (PT) – Mike, Mike!  Where the hell are you Pence?

Vice President Pence (VPP) – I’m right here (under his breath) as always.

PT – Good.  Look Mike I need to talk to Kennedy.

VPP – Supreme Court Justice Kennedy?

PT – Well obviously I don’t mean dead Teddy.  Yeah, Justice Kennedy.  I need to advance my agenda and since Congress is hopeless, a new SCOTUS appointment feels like the right thing.  Summon him to my office and make it snappy.

VPP – Mr. President, you can’t summon a supreme court justice, no one can.

PT – Well then ask him to lunch at the White House.

VPP – Certainly, when would you like to meet with him?

PT – Today.

VPP – But suppose he’s already scheduled for a meeting or a case?

PT – Pence, come on man!  Show me something here.  I’m starting to think I should have replaced you with Lying Ted.  Alright, have it your way.  Ask him when he can come.

VPP – What should I tell him is the subject of the meeting?

PT – Pastrami and corned beef.

VPP – What?

PT – We will be discussing the finer points of New York Deli sandwiches.  That should get him.

VPP – Yes Mr. President.

 

Scene 2: Two Weeks Later, White House Dining Room

PT – Well Tony, do you want anymore sauerkraut on that plate or maybe the potato salad.

Justice Kennedy (JK) – No thank you Mr. President.  I couldn’t eat another thing.

PT – Please Tony call me Don.  All my friends do.  Well, except the ones I don’t like.

JK – Okay Donnie.

PT – Just Don.  Let’s keep things friendly here.

JK – Sure Don, sure.

PT – Okay.  So, you’re probably wondering why I called you in for this meeting.  I mean in addition to the salted cured meats.

JK – Can I guess it has something to do with my retirement?

PT – Bingo.  See you’re a smart guy.  You know what’s what.

JK – Well Don, I hope you’re not going to try to convince me to retire before I’m ready.

PT – Nonsense, I would never try to force anyone to do anything he wasn’t ready to.

JK – Good Don, because it would just spoil our friendship.

PT – Right, right, sure.  Say I was just wondering do you do much golfing?

JK – No Don, I don’t.  I’m more of a yoga kind of guy.

PT – Oh yoga, sure, sure of course, very, um, interesting.

JK – I like that and modern expressionistic dance.

PT – …, hmm  …  dance you say.

JK – Yes it’s one of my great passions.

PT – You a married man, Tony?

JK – Don, I’ve been married to the same wonderful woman for more than fifty years.

PT – So, Tony does your wife share your … passion for dance.

JK – Oh, far from it.  She thinks it’s a silly thing for a man to do.  She’s very old fashioned that way.  Not a free spirit like me, Don.

PT – Yeah, I’m starting to get the picture.  So, Tony, I was wondering if you know that Trump Resorts for Retirees includes several very prestigious locales that you might find … interesting.

JK – Where for instance?

PT – Well, South Beach, Provincetown, Fire Island.

JK – Those are all gay havens.

PT – Are they?  I didn’t know.

JK – Of course you do.  What are you implying?

PT – I’m not implying anything.

JK – You think I’m gay!  Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

PT – Of course not, it’s nobody’s business whether you’re gay or bi.

JK – I’m not bi!

PT – Tony, calm down.  No one’s saying you’re gay or bi or anything for that matter.  I’m just wondering.

JK – Well, stop wondering.  I’m 100% straight.  Not that there would be anything wrong if I weren’t.

PT – Of course not.  Well I’m glad we got that straightened out.

JK – Right.

PT – So, Tony, you may not be aware but several of Trump Resorts properties have clothing optional sunbathing.

JK – Really?  That seems very strange.  Which ones?

PT – Oh, let me check this brochure.  Well, by a strange coincidence, South Beach, Provincetown and Fire Island.

JK – Okay, I’m outta here.

PT – But Tony, I wasn’t implying anything.

JK – And that’s another thing stop calling me Tony, Mr President.

PT – If you insist Tony.

JK – And for your information I intend to serve on the bench until I’m one hundred and eleven!  Good day!  (leaves in a huff).

PT – …hmmm…   (speaking into an intercom) Mike summon Justice Booth Gator Beanbag or whatever her name is for lunch tomorrow.

 

Since my readers don’t always stop by every day I figured I’d paste this poll on each post for a while to see what folks call themselves.  This is the post the poll came from  Who Are We?

… And that got me thinking. Who are the people who read my blog?  I thought it might be fun to see what the cross-section looked like.  If you feel like saying what you believe in, feel free to leave a comment and/or pick a label from the poll below.  I think it might be interesting.

 

Coming Soon
Total Votes : 56