Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) took to the floor of the U.S. Senate today to take on the unpatriotic, partisan, power-game the Republicans are playing to block the judicial branch of government from being capable of functioning at full power.
The message from Senate Republicans is crystal clear,” Warren said. “Forget the Constitution. It doesn’t matter who President Obama nominates because the Republicans will allow no votes on that nominee. They will hold no hearings on that nominee. Their response to one of the most solemn and consequential tasks that our government performs, the confirmation of a Supreme Court Justice, will be to pretend that that nominee, and President Obama himself, simply do not exist.
Warren continued that at the same time all of this is going on, the GOP seems to be stuck between the blockade while also freaking out because its party is about to nominate one of two of the most extremist members of the party. Because these people are so extreme, Warren says that Republicans seem fearful that it will lead their party to defeat in November. The two things are linked because if Republicans really wanted to stand up against extremists then Warren says that they can start with the ones in the Senate.
The refusal of the senators to execute the most basic Constitutional duties of their office is shocking, but it is not new.” She went on to read Article II of the Constitution which outlines the role of the president on selecting a justice. “There is no secret clause that says, ‘Except when that president is a Democrat.’ But for seven years that’s how Republicans in the Senate have acted.
Warren said that the Constitution talks about “advise and consent” and that each senator took an oath to uphold the Constitution. It’s the last thing they’re doing. “If senators object to a nominee’s qualifications, they can vote no and then go explain themselves to the American people.” Warren said that there have been times when she disagreed with a nominee President Obama has made but she abided by the “advise and consent” rule and voted against the nominee. That’s the way our democracy works.
This isn’t about judgement or qualifications, Warren says that these extremists are blocking them all entirely to “undermine the government itself.” It isn’t the first time either. Warren walked through everyone from judges to the Secretaries of Labor and for the Environmental Protection Agency as well as nominees to the National Labor Relations Board and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, all because of partisan games.
The message couldn’t be clearer,” Warren continued. “No matter how much it damages the nation, no matter how it undermines the courts, no matter, whether it cripples the government or lays waste to our Constitution, senate Republicans do pretty much everything they can to avoid acknowledging the legitimacy of our democratically elected president.
She explained that the GOP wants to literally nullify the Obama Presidency while also trying to pretend like they can govern responsibility, but it doesn’t work that way. There are in fact consequences for actions, and these polling numbers prove it. It might make them sad, but Obama was elected in 2008 by 9 million people and by 5 million in 2012. He’s the legitimate leader of the United States and he gets to nominate the damn justice.
One thing is certain: When you don’t want the government to work, that’s anarchy. Plain and simple. That’s what we should be calling them out on.
Check out her full speech below:
Featured image via video capture.