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Nuclear Mitch Rides Again

Godspeed, Senate Majority Leader!

With the legislative branch split between republicans and democrats, the predominant branch of government finds itself in gridlock.  Proposed bills will surely go nowhere, unless both parties commit to screwing America. 

Yet both chambers have their own niche to fill.  The democrats in the House have devoted themselves to investigating the type of toilet paper Trump uses. The Senate on the other hand is poised to remake the federal judiciary. 

Conservatives have touted the progress Trump has made with regard to the federal court system.  McConnell has been excellent in pushing nominees through, much to the Democrat’s chagrin.

Politico reports that this process is about to speed up.

In an article titled, McConnell preps new nuclear option to speed Trump judges, Politico says that McConnell has more parliamentary tricks at his disposal to move these nominees along through confirmation.

The article says, “the GOP is also preparing to pull the trigger on the “nuclear option” and change Senate rules once again with a simple majority to allow much quicker confirmation of lower court judges in the coming months.”

Politico added a statement from Senator Thune, “The committee is working to put [judges] out on the floor and as soon as they come to the floor the leader’s making it a priority to move them,” said Sen. John Thune of South Dakota, McConnell’s top deputy. “It’ll be a high priority for the foreseeable future. I mean, it’s one of the things we can do that we don’t need the House’s help with.”

According to the United States Government, there are 154 vacant federal judgeships. All but a dozen of them are at the District Court level.

The expansion of a conservative judicial second and third string team bodes well for the future of the republic and the Republican Party.  Republican presidents have a notoriously difficult time picking good judges.  We get people like Sandra Day O’Connor, David Souter, and John Roberts.

In order to avoid those types of nominees, future presidents will be able to look at the body of work from a hundred judges that were appointed by Trump.  Circuit Courts will be transformed as lower court judges move up with future vacancies and appointments.  All of this fosters an environment where Originalism becomes the norm in America. 

Of course, the democrats object to this.  Politico shared what Chuck Schumer had been thinking. Schumer’s idea was, “reinstate Democrats’ ability to weigh in on home state Circuit Court nominees via the “blue slip” practice in exchange for bipartisan support for shortening debate on Trump nominees.

“My answer to them is restore the blue slips and then maybe we can come to a compromise,” Schumer said, adding that he had spoken to several GOP senators about it. “They’re eroding democracy, they’re eroding bipartisanship and sooner or later, they’ll regret it.”

The irony is rich here.  Schumer is concern about eroding democracy, yet he wants to preserve or reinstate a practice that allows two senators to wield the entire “advice and consent” power. For those who don’t know, the blue slip is the practice of the two senators from a nominee’s home state being able to oppose or approve the nominee before the judiciary committee holds a vote. It’s an idiotic practice that dates back to 1917 and it has been altered several times, sometimes granting the absolute authority to block a nominee while other times merely being used as a factor in the vote. Schumer wants it restored to the point where it only takes one home state senator to derail the nomination process.  Trump could nominate a judge from California and it would only take Kamala Harris saying “nah” to block the nomination.  That is not democratic!

Politico describes the proposed change by comparing it with progress on Circuit Court nominees. “Though Trump and McConnell have set an impressive pace at the Circuit Court level, they’ve lagged on District Court vacancies. But that is likely to change as Republicans prepare to sideline Democrats and shave debate time from 30 hours to just two hours for those judges and lower-level executive branch nominees.”

The citizens of the various states gave the Republicans a majority in the Senate.  The fact of the matter is that the Senate has no constitutional obligation to preserve its own arbitrary procedures.  Our government isn’t run by Frasier and Niles bickering over wine-club bylaws. If the senate wants to confirm nominees quickly and without bipartisanship, that is the majority’s prerogative.

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