Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Mitch McConnell might not simply deny President Obama the ability to fill the vacancy in the Supreme Court, but the next President as well.

Courtesy of Think Progress: 

Just hours after Justice Antonin Scalia’s death, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) announced that he would confirm no one President Obama nominates to fill Scalia’s seat. “This vacancy should not be filled until we have a new President,” according to a statement McConnell released shortly after news of Scalia’s death became public. 

Now, however, McConnell appears to be having second thoughts — not about blocking Obama’s nominee; he’s fully committed to that position — but about whether it is a good idea to allow the next president to fill the seat either.

Perhaps I missed a day in my American Government class, but how is this not political malpractice?

And it also serves as a reminder that we Democrats need to not only focus on getting a President elected, but we need to take back as many seat in the Senate and the House as humanly possible.

If we do not pave the way for the person who will take President Obama's place (Assuming of course it will be s Democrat.) we will simply find ourselves entrenched in an ideological battle, where nothing gets accomplished, for the next four to eight years.


  1. Anonymous2:47 PM

    Also the next gerrymandering year (Federal Census) is quickly approaching in 4 more years. If Dems don't hold the House then, the Repubs will gerrymander the districts for the next 10 years (AGAIN!). That's the only reason Repubs still have any power at all - they control state elections - even after the country is continuing to turn Left every election cycle.

    1. Anonymous4:16 PM

      I hate to break, the "turtle man's bubble" but this is POTUS's "Bucket year"! He can appoint one without their approval tomorrow if he had to. He is going through the motions but it is within his right to appoint and confirm the SCOTUS. It doesn't make for good will, but either does their stonewalling.
      So BUK off Repigs!
      I'm sure he will use that nuclear , he may as well they already call him a "dictator and tyrant" so fuck them all!

    2. 66gardeners3:57 AM

      If the senate recesses for even one minute, all bets are off.

    3. He can make a recess appointment after noon on Friday.

      Otherwise he nominates someone and they can refuse to consider them and stall the process until after the new president is sworn in. Of course, if they do they risk pissing off enough of the public that they lose seats gerrymandering or no.

      And if it's a Democratic president, which it appears to be, McConnell will have a hard time explaining why he is obstructing the 'voice of the people' this time and how 4 years isn't long enough to consider any nominees for SCOTUS and that we must basically wait for a Republican president to nominate someone.

      People are getting real tired of this partisan bullshit. Even the Republicans.

  2. Anonymous2:51 PM

    There are just days when I can't help wishing that certain people who control way too much in people's lives would simply not wake up in the morning. McConnell looks and sounds like such a weak dweeb (and I have actually felt bad for him for looking like he survived a chemical burn and how his mouth seems barely able to open), but oh how he loves to stick it to the Dems in Congress and the WH and those of us who are in the millions in this country. I can't wait to something gets his cruel bony ass out of the Senate.

    1. Anonymous3:34 PM

      McConnell is completely craven, a worthless human being. But my money's on Barack Obama.

    2. Anonymous4:24 PM

      The next time you have a convo with someone ask them what their Senator or Congress critter has done for them...chances are you will get a blank look especially in a red state.
      People don't know the Senator/Congressperson in their area is NOT "just a talking head on fox news" but they are there to HELP YOU! You will be surprised how many people don't know that!
      They are supposed to uphold the will of the people & help them, say like sign up for Obamacare etc, not just their little fucked up agenda's they cook up when a dem potus comes in.
      Ask people and tell them, my bet is McConnel and his ilk don't do anything for anyone, but people don't know! People think POTUS is the one who does everything! Its shocking but fox news tells them that so "it must be true"?!

    3. 66gardeners3:59 AM

      Republicans know how to milk the system.

      Republican Maryland governor, Larry Hogan, this month requested disaster assistance for snow removal.

  3. Justice Kennedy was confirmed in Reagan's last year in office. And that was AFTER the Iran Contra hearings that led to 14 indictments of Reagan staffers and 11 convictions!!!

    Today's GOP is treasonous. Vote them out!!!

  4. Anonymous2:52 PM

    I'd like to know how that asshole got re-elected in the first place.Most hated politician in the country and he gets re-elected.Something smells to high heaven.

    1. Anonymous3:07 PM

      He lives in a red state. Period.

    2. Anonymous3:12 PM

      Kentucky. Or, as some call it KenFucky. Where yur daddy isbyur uncle ran second forbthr state motto.

    3. Anonymous4:06 PM

      Actually it's "KinFucky" as in fucking your "kin" (not some guy named Ken)

    4. 66gardeners4:00 AM

      Rand Paul and Mitch McConnell are butties

  5. Anonymous3:00 PM

    Xian Right continue to lose their shit and refuse to face reality head on that religion is in full decline worldwide.

  6. Anonymous3:02 PM

    If Trump becomes president, he can nominate Judge Judy

    1. Anonymous3:18 PM

      Or he could unearth Judge Wapner....

    2. Anonymous3:31 PM

      or Judge Palin.

    3. Anonymous3:39 PM

      Maybe bring Judge Reinhold back from celebrity death.

    4. Anonymous3:40 PM

      3:31 no Judge Palin because she is unable to pass a bar... Alcohol or law.

    5. Anonymous4:28 PM

      We wouldn't NEED SCOTUS b/c Dictator tRump would just make up the laws as he goes along...

    6. Anonymous5:22 PM

      He'll nominate himself.

    7. 66gardeners4:00 AM

      Judge Judy would excoriate republicans for their shenanigans. She hates liars.

  7. fromthediagonal3:04 PM

    We must vote Progressive from the Bottom Up and from the Top Down. There is no other Alternative.

    1. Anonymous3:45 PM

      Leave it at voting Democratic and we'll do fine if we can replace as many of the current GOP members of the Senate and House as possible.

  8. Anonymous3:25 PM

    It's called treason. McConnel should be hung.

  9. Anonymous3:44 PM

    At just what point can we call sedition sedition? As a person over 70 years of age, I am totally befuddled, alarmed and ashamed of the behavior of Congressional GOP members. Never in my memory have members of either party behaved so abominably. Even with Richard Nixon at his worst, it was members of both parties who acted together to solve the problem.

    1. It's because since Reagan the nation has swung more and more to the right. We are becoming a Fascist state in everything but name.

      Donald doesn't want to be president. He wants to be Chancellor of Amerikkka. Seig Heil!

  10. Anonymous3:45 PM

    Perhaps it's time to remind people that the majority of the senators up for re-election this year are republicans and we can vote them all out of office if sufficiently disgusted with them. Just sayin'

    1. That would be nice if it weren't for the ril 'muricans that think obstruction is just what this country needs if it means putting the Democrats and that uppity N in his place. They will vote with their bible in one hand and their gun in the other. Toothless mouthbreathers. Their church will tell them the Democrats are the devil and that we must stop them at every turn. So vote for this moron teabagger to save the country from the godless and take 'murica back from Canada or something.

      They are 'team' players. They've joined the Republican team and win or lose they'll stay loyal to their team, shut up, sit down and vote as they're told.

      Our only hope is for time to pass while they slowly die off to be replaced by younger voters who are better informed and more progressive.

      McConnell's generation are dying off.

      What we need to fear is the likes of Paul Ryan and other younger Republicans recruiting those that don't know any better, like the poor, the uneducated, the stupid and immigrants. In my neighborhood (low income So. Cal and democratic) the Republican party goes door to door registering minorities that are citizens to vote. And they convince them to register as Republican and then just vote for the Republicans, no need to read anything or make any decisions. It's a TEAM and LOYALTY thing.

      My Mother is 86 and that is her mindset. She doesn't agree with what today's Republican Party stands for but she saw Eisenhower once, registered as a Republican and votes Republican no matter what. I'm sure it killed her to vote for McCain and Palin but she refused to vote for Obama. Probably voted for Romney too. And I'm sure she'll hold her nose and vote for Trump even if Hillary is running against him. My Dad will vote for Hillary.

  11. Anonymous3:46 PM

    If republican obstruction continues, I'm looking forward to President Hillary appointing former President Obama to the Supreme Court.

  12. If Hillary or Bernie gets elected ...........Obama for Supreme Court

    1. Anonymous5:03 PM

      Give the President a vacation! A break! (Maybe in 15 years...)

    2. Anonymous5:25 PM

      He already said he wasn't interested in the job.

    3. If Bernie is president he could nominate Bill or Hillary or Elizabeth Warren. Warren has said she didn't want to be president but she might change her mind about SCOTUS.

      Obama has said he's not interested but I wonder if he might be in a few years after the girls are in college. There should be plenty of openings in the next 4-8 years, hopefully under Democratic presidencies. I hope Obama changes his mind. He would make a great justice and there is precedent. (unlike for the behavior of McConnell and the seditious obstructionists.)

  13. Anonymous3:49 PM

    I'm an independent conservative and scratching my head on this. Granted, I have been out of school a number of years--but I don't recall anywhere in the Constitution that gives the senate majority leader that kind of obstructionist power. The good people of Kentucky need to fire him if he's up for reelection or recall him.

  14. Anonymous3:50 PM

    Al Franken Blasts Mitch McConnell On Senate Floor For Blocking Obama SCOTUS Nominee

    Sen. Al Franken (D-MN) took to the Senate floor to blast Mitch McConnell and Senate Republicans while revealing the absurdity of their argument against considering President Obama's Supreme Court nominee.

    Republicans Spit On The American People By Denying Obama SCOTUS Nominee A Hearing

    ...So there you have it. Republicans will play anarchists for $100, and gamble losing the Senate just to deny President Obama his Constitutional duty and right, as well as deny the American people their input, which they gave twice in 2008 and again in 2012 when they re-elected President Obama by five million votes.

    Did you feel that? Senate Republicans just spit in your face.

    Republicans Rocked As Polls Show 4 Senators Could Lose Seats Due To Obstructing Obama

    Obama Is Outsmarting Republicans And Winning The Supreme Court Nominee Fight

    President Obama is winning the Supreme Court fight as he is outsmarting Republicans at every turn and forcing them to choose between his confirming nominee or losing their own jobs.

    Hillary Clinton Blasts Shameful Republicans For Blocking Obama Supreme Court Nominee

    Hillary Clinton unloaded on Senate Republicans for putting partisanship ahead of statesmanship by obstructing President Obama's Supreme Court nominee.

    A Lot Weaker Than They Look

    ...As I said, I don't need to be convinced that Republicans will do anything to block President Obama from choosing Scalia's successor. But I think they protest way, way too much about the brittleness of their position and the potential electoral fallout. The emphaticness of the "three nos" isn't really necessary to convince anyone at this point. It's to make the point so ferociously, totally, almost maniacally that they can actually end the debate now. But I doubt they actually can. And I think the fallout for Republican senators up for reelection in swing states this year is potentially far greater than people realize.

  15. Anonymous3:52 PM

    These republican traitors need to be reminded who they work for and who is paying their salaries and benefits.

    Personally, I want a refund.

    Al Franken Blasts Mitch McConnell On Senate Floor For Blocking Obama SCOTUS Nominee

  16. Anonymous3:53 PM

    McConnell is an old man and never looked healthy. He won't outlive too many people.

    Scalia didn't.

  17. Anonymous3:58 PM

    A white supremacist super PAC is rolling out a fresh robocall campaign this week in Vermont and Minnesota telling voters, “Don’t vote for a Cuban. Vote for Donald Trump.”

    In a recording of the robocall sent to TPM, American National Super PAC founder William Daniel Johnson calls on white Americans to brush aside their fears of being branded as racist and stop the “gradual genocide against the white race” by electing Trump.

    “The white race is dying out in America and Europe because we are afraid to be called ‘racist,’” Johnson says in the recording, which will be pushed out Wednesday in Vermont and Thursday in Minnesota. Voters in both states will head to the polls on Super Tuesday to vote in the Republican presidential primary.

    Johnson, who serves as the head of the white nationalist American Freedom Party, has pushed out similar robocall campaigns through his PAC in Iowa and New Hampshire. Both the party and PAC explicitly praise Trump for espousing what they see as a pro-white, anti-immigrant message.

    1. 66gardeners4:03 AM

      Thanks Trump

      For shoveling their BS right back at em (any and all republicans).

  18. Anonymous4:02 PM

    Good Lord, Pass the SCOTUS Popcorn

    Grassley explains refusal to meet with nominee, hold hearings or vote: "I'm here to do my job."

    Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) told Iowa reporters Wednesday that he was just doing his job by refusing to advance President Barack Obama's Supreme Court nominee.

    "Do you think I spend my days wondering about how Chuck Grassley will go down in history? I don’t care if I ever go down in history,” Grassley said, as quoted by The Hill. "I'm here to do my job."

    As of late Tuesday, Grassley had yet to respond to a request for a "consultive" meeting on the high court vacancy from President Barack Obama. Grassley is one of many GOPers, including Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), who have said they will refuse to meet with Obama's nominee to replace Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, who died earlier this month at age 79.

    1. Maple7:06 AM

      Did any of those useless Iowa reporters dare to tell him to do his job then? Probably not. Useless, the lot of them. Back in the days before TV, newspapers took their position as the fourth estate seriously. They would never have let such an obvious lie go by without challenging it. How far we've fallen.....

    2. What job is that?

      Obstructing everything Obama does per McConnell's orders? Or doing his job as senator as set for in the Constitution.

      Because he's not doing the latter which *is* his job. That's the one the voters are paying him to do with our tax money.

  19. Anonymous4:04 PM

    This is all just hyperbolic bullshit from Turtle Man.

  20. Anonymous4:05 PM

    President Obama knows that he has Mitch McConnell trapped. McConnell has to choose whether he wants to lose his job as Majority Leader of the Senate, or confirm the President’s Supreme Court nominee. Obama isn’t giving Republicans an out. The President shattered all of the Republican excuses for their obstruction, and preemptively took the Republicans’ arguments away from them.

    Time and time again, this president has been four steps ahead of his Republican opponents. The White House is pushing Republicans into a position of having to risk their own careers by blocking his nominee. The report that Obama is vetting a Republican for the potential nomination is a shrewd political move that is designed to keep the heat on Mitch McConnell.

    The walls are closing in on the Senate Republicans. If they insist on blocking his Supreme Court nominee, President Obama is taking steps to make sure that Democrats win back control of the Senate in November. Mitch McConnell is proving to be no match for President Barack Obama.

    1. The republican is the Governor of Nevada. The republicans would love his stand on unions, work and business but hate that he is progressive on abortion, health, women and other issues.

      He's a centrist Republican.

      Republicans would also hate that he is from Harry Reid's state of Nevada.

      While there's talk the Democrats wouldn't like him Harry Reid would probably help to smooth this guys way if he was nominated and it came to a vote.

      We could do a lot worse. And it would be worth it to make the Republicans eat their words.

      He might become more liberal the longer he sat on the bench. But even a second swing justice would be an improvement. We need less partisanship on the bench and more swing.

  21. Anonymous4:11 PM

    Meet The Republican Willing To Give Obama’s SCOTUS Nom A Chance

    Moderate Sen. Mark Kirk (R-IL) on Monday strayed from the hard line issued by Senate Republican leaders on President Obama's nomination to the Supreme Court, calling for the Senate to consider the President's nominee.

    "I recognize the right of the president, be it Republican or Democrat, to place before the Senate a nominee for the Supreme Court and I fully expect and look forward to President Barack Obama advancing a nominee for the Senate to consider," Kirk wrote in a Monday op-ed in the Chicago Sun-Times.

    Kirk's first public statement on how the Senate should proceed after Scalia's death had been keenly anticipated because he's a moderate Republican facing re-election this year in a closely watched race.

    "I also recognize my duty as a senator to either vote in support or opposition to that nominee following a fair and thorough hearing along with a complete and transparent release of all requested information," he continued. "The Senate’s role in providing advice and consent is as important and significant as the president’s role in proposing a nominee."

    1. You can tell he's up for re-election. All of those whose seats are vulnerable are stating the same thing. That they're taking their responsibilities seriously and will be doing their jobs.

  22. Anonymous4:14 PM

    Fox News' Martha MacCallum quizzed Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) on Senate Republicans' decision to deny President Obama's Supreme Court nominee a hearing, telling the senator that his position is "surprising" given his reverence for the Constitution.

    "The president has laid out I think what anyone would say is a very fair set of circumstances for nominating someone, so why not give this person hearing?" MacCallum asked Lee During a Wednesday interview on Fox News' "America's Newsroom."

    Lee, a member of the Judiciary Committee, said that Obama is "a lame duck president in his final months of office" and that voters should choose the next president that they want to select the next Supreme Court justice.

    "Yeah, but I think, Senator, with all due respect, wouldn't the American people say we elected President Obama?" MacCallum asked in response.

    "We also elected the senators who are currently in office, and we expect them both, on both sides to do their job. The president's job is to name a nominee, your job is to give that person a hearing and either appoint or not," she continued. "So why not go through the process? Why do you get to decide that?"

    "Now you're also absolutely right, the president has the right to nominate," Lee replied. "That is his prerogative. It's also the Senate's right to decide when, whether, how, to what extent, to confirm someone."

    He then argued that it's "tradition" not to confirm Supreme Court nominees during election years.

    "I don't think that gets around the basic requirement to do the job, to go through the process, and if you all decide that you don't want to give consent to that person, well that's absolutely your right," MacCallum said. "And just given your background and being such an adherent to the Constitution, it seems somewhat surprising I think to some people to take that attitude."

    She added that Republican obstruction of Obama's nominee feeds the perception that lawmakers "are blocking things from happening on Capitol Hill."

    "We are blocking this from happening, make no mistake about it. We are blocking this one. And we feel it's our obligation to do so," Lee responded, adding that Obama "has overstepped his constitutional boundaries so many times."

    "But then why does it make it right to do that on your side?" MacCallum hit back. "You can look at this person and say 'no thank you, we don't like this person,' but why the hesitation to have a hearing? To do the process? I think that's what people have a hard time understanding."

    Lee replied that the Senate has "already made that decision, and it would be a waste of time and resources for us to do so." He also said that the Supreme court is "well-equipped" to operate with just eight justices.

    Watch the interview via Fox News:

    1. Anonymous7:56 PM

      Save real money, shut that fucker down...

      The Republican Party is morally and ethically bankrupt.

    2. Anonymous4:12 AM

      The notion of "lame duck" has been greatly exaggerated by the current GOP and the media. Both have referred to President Obama as a "lame duck" ever since he was reelected in 2014. He will barely be a "lame duck" after the election in 2016 because he will still have all of the power and responsibility of the office until noon on January 20, 2017. Gee, did the GOP tell George W. Bush or Ronald Reagan that they were "lame ducks" for the entire four years of their second terms? I thought not.

    3. What "tradition"?

      The "tradition" known as the Thurgood rule is just that, a non-binding tradition based on nothing. And it has to do with not nominating anyone after the November election has chosen a new president. That is still many months away. So far away in fact that a new justice can easily be confirmed before that election as the longest it has taken is 185 days.

      Not only are the Republicans taking a chance of losing their majority given how many of their seats are up for a vote this November but they also take the chance that the Democrats will do this to the next Republican president, whenever that happens.

      But then the Republicans have always regarded themselves as "special" as in what's sauce for the goose is never sauce for the gander. They can do whatever they want whether they are in the majority or minority, whereas the democrats can never do anything even when they are in the majority. As as we're seeing, neither can a democratic president.

      So much for the voice of the people. And the Constitution for that matter.

  23. Anonymous4:31 PM

    In a post to the prominent SCOTUSblog, President Obama lays down why he’s still going forward and appointing someone, why he’ll be appointing them, the qualities he’s looking for in a Justice, and expects Republicans to follow through with their constitutional duty as well.

    He writes:

    “The Constitution vests in the President the power to appoint judges to the Supreme Court. It’s a duty that I take seriously, and one that I will fulfill in the weeks ahead.

    It’s also one of the most important decisions that a President will make. Rulings handed down by the Supreme Court directly affect our economy, our security, our rights, and our daily lives.

    Needless to say, this isn’t something I take lightly. It’s a decision to which I devote considerable time, deep reflection, careful deliberation, and serious consultation with legal experts, members of both political parties, and people across the political spectrum. And with thanks to SCOTUSblog for allowing me to guest post today, I thought I’d share some spoiler-free insights into what I think about before appointing the person who will be our next Supreme Court Justice.

    President Barack Obama - Guest

    Posted Wed, February 24th, 2016 8:00 am

    A Responsibility I Take Seriously

    The Constitution vests in the President the power to appoint judges to the Supreme Court. It’s a duty that I take seriously, and one that I will fulfill in the weeks ahead.

  24. Anonymous4:37 PM

    Senate Republicans just announced that they won't even allow a committee hearing on President Obama's Supreme Court nominee—and they don't even care who the nominee is.1

    This is the most blatant partisan obstruction we've ever seen. Even Republican Senators Mark Kirk and Susan Collins—and former Republican Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor—disagree with it.2,3

    In fact, you know who else disagrees? Ronald Reagan, the infallible patron saint of the Republican Party.

    The video we uncovered of Reagan demanding an election-year vote on his Supreme Court nominee is priceless—and we used it to create a devastating TV ad holding Republicans accountable. Will you chip in $3 to help push back and make sure as many people as possible see it—and help fuel our rapid-response campaign?

    Yes, I'll chip in to help keep MoveOn's ad featuring Ronald Reagan demanding an election-year vote on his Supreme Court nominee on the air.

    Never in U.S. history has the Senate rejected a Supreme Court nominee before they even knew who the nominee was, no matter how supremely qualified, no matter that person's track record on the issues.

    In fact, when Reagan asked a Democratic Senate to confirm Justice Anthony Kennedy in an election year, they confirmed him 97-0.5

    The ad we created shines a bright spotlight on the hypocrisy and radical obstruction of today's Republicans.

    And we know this line of argument is effective. Polls show voters overwhelmingly disapprove of the Republicans' plan to keep a seat on the Supreme Court vacant for an entire year.6

    That's why Senate Republicans in tight races, like Illinois Senator Mark Kirk, have already come out against McConnell's radical obstruction.

    We can force Republicans to back down, but we need to keep up the pressure so they know they'll pay a huge political price for blocking President Obama's nominee. Will you chip in $3 to help us push back, and keep MoveOn's ad with Ronald Reagan demanding an election-year vote on his Supreme Court nominee on the air?

    1. Oh, that Reagan footage is so going to show up on Colbert very soon.

  25. Anonymous4:43 PM

    Senate: Do your job

    To be delivered to The United States Senate
    Do your constitutional duty. Confirm a highly qualified Supreme Court nominee.

    There are currently 227,809 signatures. NEW goal - We need 250,000 signatures!

  26. We vote.
    And really really get others to vote.
    In the meantime, signing petitions does work.
    A veces.

    1. Democrats abroad: You can vote in the Presidential Primaries. It's easy.

  27. 66gardeners3:56 AM

    Generally, republicans can't stand Mitch McConnell. This type of behavior from him is what they do like about him.

    Anyone defending the GOP by voting for them shares in the blame.

  28. So this is what our democracy has come to? A may way or the highway Republican Party that is going to demand their way whether they have a majority or not? They will only allow a Republican president to do their job and will only vote for Republican bills and laws. Anything else and they'll obstruct.

    Do we really want hold my breath until I turn blue obstructionist tantrums in Congress?

    Who is voting for these clowns?

    Will enough people wake up, smell the rotten eggs and throw the bastards out?

    Democrats are already sick of it. I think more Independents are sick of it. The non-partisans have been sick of it for years. When will enough Republicans be sick of this and throw these bastards out. And I don't mean replacing them with even more whacko teabaggers.

    Enough already.


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