Trump’s Second SCOTUS Nominee, Brett Kavanaugh
Democrats find themselves in a bind in opposing the least controversial of the four candidates Trump was considering.
President Donald Trump’s choice of Brett Kavanaugh to replace Justice Anthony Kennedy quickly earned high praise from Republicans who laud his conservative judicial record on the DC Circuit Court while at the same time presented Democrats with little substantive material to raise against his confirmation. In introducing Kavanaugh, Trump noted the importance of choosing a justice who was committed to upholding the Constitution, stating, “In keeping with President Reagan’s legacy, I do not ask about a nominee’s personal opinions. What matters is not a judge’s political views, but whether they can set aside those views to do what the law and the Constitution require. I am pleased to say that I have found, without doubt, such a person.”
While Kavanaugh was not the flashiest pick as some of the others potential nominees may have been, he was by far the safest choice in light of the Democrats’ determined resistance. Former President George W. Bush, who originally tabbed Kavanaugh for the DC Circuit Court back in 2003, offered his full-throated support, stating that Trump had made an “outstanding decision” and that Kavanaugh was a “brilliant jurist” who “will make a superb Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States.” And maybe more importantly, Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME), who is one of two moderate Republicans that Democrats have targeted to swing their way, struck a positive note, stating, “Judge Kavanaugh has impressive credentials and extensive experience.”
However, the reality is that no matter who Trump chose, Democrats and their cohorts in the mainstream media were committed to engaging the #Resistance, doing everything in their power to prevent Trump from replacing Kennedy — famously or infamously known for being the Court’s swing vote — with a constitutionally committed conservative justice. For Democrats, it is a hill worth dying on. In fact, Senate Minority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) called the issue a “life-and-death” scenario and even suggested that Democrat senators up for reelection in red states need to be willing to lose in an effort to prevent confirmation.
Durbin further opined, “They [Democrats] understand it’s an historic decision. It’s about more than the next election. It’s about what future the United States of America is going to chart.” Durban’s comments were clearly intended for those three Democrats up for reelection in states that Trump won. Those Democrats, who previously crossed the aisle to vote in favor of Justice Neil Gorsuch last time — West Virginia’s Joe Manchin, North Dakota’s Heidi Heitkamp and Indiana’s Joe Donnelly — will now be faced with even greater party pressure this time to toe the line.
The Democrats’ strategy in opposing Kavanaugh will be two-fold. First will be an attempt to make the issue of ObamaCare central by raising questions as to whether Kavanaugh would continue to support it as constitutional. Kavanaugh’s past remarks on ObamaCare are something Democrats will undoubtedly target. Secondly, Democrats will attack his Roman Catholic faith in order to call into question his stance on abortion. As far as Kavanaugh’s judicial record, Democrats have little ammunition to challenge him on, therefore they will seek to attack his personal beliefs and not his commitment to upholding the Constitution. Ultimately, the Democrat Party’s endgame is to convince those Democrats in tight election races not to break ranks while at the same time convincing one or two moderate Republicans to do just that.
One thing is becoming increasingly obvious, as evidenced by House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi’s (D-CA) recent stratospheric hyperbole: “Civilization as we know it today is at risk in this election. We have to win. We have to win.” Democrats are entering panic mode.
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