Liberal Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, 87, has been undergoing chemotherapy since May to deal with a recurring cancer issue.
Top liberal US Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has recurrence of cancer and is undergoing chemotherapy https://t.co/440uoXM3QL
— BBC Breaking News (@BBCBreaking) July 17, 2020
“I have often said I would remain a member of the Court as long as I can do the job full steam,” Ginsburg said. “I remain fully able to do that.” The president sent his good wishes and hoped for the best for her.
Any decent person of sound mind and goodwill will echo the sentiments of the president. However, we here would be analytically remiss if we did not look at the possible political ramifications of Justice Ginsburg leaving the court for health reasons. And they are monumental.
If it happens between now and Labor Day the GOP just might be able to rush in another justice before the new year when the Senate could change hands. Most likely choice? Judge Amy Coney Barrett of the 7th Court of Appeals. She’s highly telegenic, young, conservative, articulate, and the Democrats would tread lighter against her than against a man. But tread they would.
The Democrats will throw everything in the world they have and then some against the high court nominee because they would realize, even if Trump loses the general election, his conservative legacy would live on in the Supreme Court. Also, if Barrett made it through there would be a decisive 5-4 conservative majority on the court regardless of how Chief Justice John Roberts votes. On some cases, when Roberts votes conservative, make that 6-3.
Other liberal justices, feeling like they are now useless, could conceivably retire as well. The confirmation hearings and vote in the Senate would be extremely dramatic, as all moves would be done with the presidential race in the backdrop.
Some Democrats in red or Trump-supporting states may feel compelled to vote for the nominee, especially if it’s Barrett. We would probably lose Collins of Maine and maybe Murkowski of Alaska. Collins voted for Kavanaugh and she’s taking tremendous heat for it in Democrat-leaning Maine. If she voted for this nominee she’s toast. Does she have the guts to do it and lose her seat? No. Weirdly, we could keep Romney on this one. He just might react well to Barrett’s, if it’s her, total professionalism. If it’s not her all bets are off with Mittens.
Of course, the vote could happen after the election when the lame duck GOP Senate is still in power, even though it lost the majority. Then the media and the Democrats would try to cave in the political roof by claiming the vote would be anti-constitutional, fascist, unethical, etc. But even if Trump loses and so goes the Senate, the GOP lame duck ploy could work.
The presidential race would go bonkers, as not only the court nominee but the future of the entire court is at play. Biden and the Democrats, especially the loony left faction, will scream to the hills that if the nominee is confirmed the Earth itself will he devoured by the Atomic Mole People.
Trump and the GOP will argue that this is another benefit of reelecting the president and, if he can get the nomination through, more proof of the president’s winning ways. In fact, if he did get Barrett on the court the momentum from that win may be enough of a push to propel him back into office in November.