Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Your time spent resting on your stellar reputation is over, Thurgood!

The hearings for Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan are underway. You know the drill: in order to be allowed onto the highest court in the land, the nominee vows to remain as silent as possible, dodge any question that may in fact reveal a personal thought or long held position, and attempt to set a Guinness world record for saying the phrase "I don't answer hypotheticals, Senator." You know, it's the way a serious country full of adults and intelligent elected officials selects a slot on its most august judicial body.

Then there's the dance our elected betters put on. Kagan's supporters on the Democratic side spend their time telling us how she's the most qualified nominee in the history of judges and law, that merely asking her a negatively toned question is likely to make God weep, and that any opposition to putting her immediately on the Supreme Court is rooted in the blackest evil, the foulest magic, and darkest blood rituals.

On the other hand, the GOP concocts scenarios in which her activist judicial fiats will split the earth in two in a literal orgy of flag burning illegal Mexican immigrants performing mandatory abortions on the Children of God, and how it is entirely conceivable that the President has nominated a dangerous mental defective and terrorist sleeper agent who, the second she gets on the bench, will strap C4 to herself and make for the Constitution.

You know how it is. It pretty much went by that book yesterday. But there was an unexpected addendum to yesterday's proceeding. Apparently going after Kagan was not enough, so the GOP decided to set their sights on another ACTIVIST JUDGE: Thurgood Marshall, who is apparently a massive shitbag.
Looks like Senate Judiciary Republicans have at least one unified talking point today: Justice Thurgood Marshall, the first African-American to ever serve on the Supreme Court, was an "activist judge." As Elena Kagan kept on her listening face, multiple senators slammed both Marshall's judicial philosophy and her service as his clerk in the late 1980s.
In an example of how much the GOP focused on Marshall, his name came up 35 times. President Obama's name was mentioned just 14 times today.

Ranking member Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL) said Kagan's reverence for Marshall "tells us much about the nominee," and he meant that more as an indictment than a compliment.
The Washington Post says the Republicans even went so far as to pass out opposition research on Justice Marshall. Thurgood Marshall! You know, the guy who argued Brown v. The Board of Education, worked tirelessly on civil rights, and worked to fix institutional barriers of racial discrimination. That Thurgood Marshall. He was apparently a massively activist asshole. So, of course, the GOP spent an entire day trying to tear him down, discredit him, and attack him in order to knock Kagan's time spent as a law clerk for Marshall. One of the most accomplished, important justice and lawyer in US legal history. I'm not sure they even asked Kagan a question.

But there is one question we do need the answer to: would current GOP Senators vote to confirm Thurgood Marshall to the Supreme Court?
Sen. Orrin Hatch, like many Republicans these days, is arguing that Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan’s hero, Thurgood Marshall, was an activist judge and that raises questions about Kagan’s judicial philosophy.
I caught up with Hatch after today’s confirmation hearing to ask an obvious question: Would Hatch have voted for Marshall?

“Well, its hard to say,” Hatch said.
Jesus Christ.

/throws up hands, walks away

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