Some things you can do ahead, like a casserole, others, well they really shouldn’t be done ahead. Like the recently published op-ed by a Republican Senator, covering his negative reaction to meeting Merrick Garland, when the meeting he wrote about hasn’t happened yet. Yeah, oops.
Like many of my Senate colleagues, I recently met with Chief Judge Merrick Garland, President Obama’s nominee to the Supreme Court. I have known Judge Garland for many years and think highly of his character and credentials. He has an excellent reputation among lawyers and fellow judges alike. I met with Judge Garland as a personal friend and out of respect for his position as a distinguished federal judge.
Our meeting, however, does not change my conviction that the Senate should consider a Supreme Court nominee after this presidential election cycle.
Now, to be very, very clear, this meeting hasn’t happened yet, but the “resulting” decision was published, and later removed, from the Deseret News website Thursday (and is still available in a cached version, here). Orrin Hatch (R-UT) obviously never intended this as a meeting to measure the qualifications of Garland as a nominee, nor to meet with him “as a friend” as he states in his prematurely published article.
Here is a screenshot of the cached page:
His intention was blatant: to toe the party line, that is self-indulgent, hateful obstructionism, and try to look like he was still basically doing his job to those voters paying attention. We aren’t shocked, the past 8 years haven’t given Republicans much practice at doing any job at all, although they are all probably experts at protracted temper tantrums by now.
He never intended for his constituents to know that he is holding up this consensus nominee regardless of qualifications, simply because they don’t want to let President Obama nominate a Supreme Court judge. No matter what they are saying, this isn’t about precedent, because this is a man whom their own party members agreed would be a qualified, acceptable candidate. And our court is sitting short a Judge as case after case is affected by their refusal to do their job.
But no, instead of listening to the American people, who voted Obama into office not once, but twice, and doing their job to ratify a nominee they had previously said they wanted, they are stalling. This behavior makes their actual motivation glaringly obvious, it isn’t about Garland, and it isn’t about what is best for America, it is one last purposeful offense offered to a much maligned, and incredibly effective president.
Featured image via Getty Images/Pete Marovich