My skin isn’t thick enough to endure criticism trailblazers like Harris, Pelosi, Gandhi, Meir, and Thatcher have had to suffer; but I have been inspired to follow in their footsteps, in my own ways. As Harris told Marie Claire magazine, “I want [young] women to know, you are powerful and your voice matters." Amen, Sisters. Amen.
Less than 24 hours after Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s death, President Trump gloated while supporters chanted “Fill That Seat”.
Have they no respect?
TMM honors Ginsburg – before discussing her replacement.
The second woman appointed to the Supreme Court, Ginsburg served 27 years, respected by all sides. Her friendship with late conservative Justice Antonin Scalia endured, while they vehemently opposed each other often.
Ginsburg reflected, “I wish I could wave a magic wand and put it back when people were respectful of each other, and Congress was working for the good of the country and not just along party lines.”
Proving “you can’t spell truth without Ruth.”
Two Gone, But Never Forgotten
Ginsburg’s passing recalls another hero, late Representative John Lewis (D-GA).
Both represented minorities: she Jewish, female and a mother (all were vastly under-represented); he black. Both soft-spoken; but when they spoke, everybody listened. Both short in height (she 5’1”, he 5’5”) – but TALL in their legacies. Proving “dynamite comes in small packages.”
Shortly before death, foreseeing approaching conflict, Ginsburg said “My most fervent wish is that I will not be replaced until a new president is installed.” A Reuters poll indicates most Americans (62%, including 55% of Republicans) believe her seat should remain vacant until after the election. Yet only two GOP senators, Lisa Murkowski (AK) and Susan Collins (ME), summoned courage and publicly agreed.
Two Things We Hate About Politics and Politicians
Ginsburg’s passing reveals our sad political reality. One shameful aspect: hypocrisy, a party saying/doing one thing while in power – the opposite when not.
In 2016, Scalia’s death – TEN MONTHS before that election – necessitated former President Obama’s replacement nomination (Merrick Garland, DC Court of Appeals). Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) blocked his nomination from a hearing, much less a vote.
Another deplorable aspect: one politician (not elected by the country) dictating our legislative process, blocking votes on anything he dislikes. Our form of government requires our elected officials to vote on our behalf – it doesn’t advocate one partisan obstructing them.
Justifying Garland’s unprecedented delay, McConnell and Republicans pontificated about the American people deciding, in an election year, who would fill the vacant seat. Opposite of their twisted logic now: when the White House and Senate were controlled by different parties, vs. the same party, THIS happened X number of times, THAT happened Y number of times, blah, blah.
Proving “there are lies, damn lies, and statistics”. Both parties can cherry-pick history; but the truth is, a brazen GOP hopes to pack the court with ideological justices BEFORE Trump’s potential defeat – less than SIX WEEKS before election day, with 25 states ALREADY voting.
Many Republicans, dancing their two-faced two-steps, contradicted themselves:
- McConnell – 2016: “Of course, the American people should have a say in the Court’s direction… this vacancy should not be filled until we have a new president.”
- McConnell – NOW: “President Trump’s nominee will receive a vote on the floor of the U.S. Senate.”
- Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) – 2018: “If an opening comes in the last year of President Trump’s term, and the primary process has started, we’ll wait until the next election.”
- Graham – NOW: “Appointing judges is a high priority for me in 2020.”
- Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) – 2016: ““There is a long tradition that you don’t do this in an election year.”
- Cruz – NOW: “The president was elected to do this, and the Senate was elected to confirm this nomination.”
Their pious 2016 arguments, that all Americans should decide who receives a lifetime appointment to our highest court – mean nothing now. Moderates, will we tolerate this insult?
Another Republican rationalization: Democrats did similar things while in power. As children, we learned “two wrongs don’t make a right”. But childhood wisdom is too much to expect from slippery politicians. They’ll perpetuate hypocrisy forever, justifying shameful behavior by accusing others of it.
Two Serious Consequences
- The Supreme Court will decide a case (after election day) determining the Affordable Care Act’s survival – and protection for those with pre-existing conditions. An ultra-conservative majority is likely to rule against the ACA. Since Republicans have NOT presented a viable plan for protecting them, or safeguarding coverage, 20 MILLION Americans could lose insurance; those with pre-existing conditions could find insurance unaffordable.
- A litmus test for GOP justices is anti-choice conviction. Increasing their majority means Roe v. Wade will likely be overturned – denying women the right to decide whether to have safe abortions.
Two Things We Can Do
Moderates, if you want our beloved country to get off this hypocrisy hayride – and show partisan senators they can’t dictate our future – ACT NOW.
- Contact YOUR senators*, demand they act honorably – not hypocritically – and fulfill Ginsburg’s dying wish, waiting to fill her seat until after the election.
- Punish hypocrites: support their OPPONENTS’ campaigns; volunteer for them; and above all, VOTE for them.
* To email senators: senate.gov, click on Find Your Senators.
* To call senators (more effective): 202-224-3121.
Images: Google Images
RBG, Supreme Court, Republicans: Rantt Media
Trump and supporters: Toledo Blade
Scalia and Ginsburg: CNN.com
Lewis and Ginsburg: MEAWW
McConnell, Garland and Obama: CNN.com
McConnell: Chicago Tribune
Trump and Graham: The Guardian
Cruz and Trump: The Texas Tribune