To the editor:
Question: Why do worthy persons lose their good sense when becoming politicians? That’s relevant as we anticipate a new Supreme Court Justice. GOP pronouncements defy logic as they refuse to consider any nominee.
1. At a time when people want Washington’s legislative logjam broken, the GOP’s only reaction is to promise another logjam.
2. The GOP tries to “justify” that refusal by quoting Joseph Biden two decades ago. Even assuming comparable situations, the reasoning is flawed. No parent condones a child’s wrongdoing – because the child pleads, “Everyone’s doing it.”
3. This GOP stone-walling violates Justice Scalia’s own primary judicial criteria. His “originalism” was formed by what he understood the Constitution originally said. The Constitution directs the president to nominate persons to the Supreme Court, and the Senate to vote approval or not. GOP partisanship violates Scalia’s revered originalism.
4. The GOP says, ”Let the people to decide.” But wait! The people have decided by electing the current president and Senate. Additionally, presidential elections are not just about the Supreme Court.
5. The assertion that president should not take such action in the final year of office is astonishing. So when does the president become ineligible to fulfill official responsibilities? Is it 10 months before term’s end, or six months, or 18 months? Does this negation of powers apply only to nominating Supreme Court Justices? How about signing legislation, presiding over Cabinet meetings, speaking to the nation in a time of crisis, etc?
I ache for our nation if we tolerate such lack of wisdom and good sense.
William A. McCartney