How long before the DemocRat party takes Rep.Debbie Dingell(Delusional-MI) to the proverbial woodshed.
Rep. Debbie Dingell (D., Mich.) on Wednesday refused to support Senate Democrats’ renewed push to pack the Supreme Court.
“I’m a traditionalist,” Dingell said after a long pause and some prodding from Fox News anchor Neil Cavuto to give an answer.
“That’s a very fundamental change in our third branch of government,” she added. “Both parties need to understand what the implications would be.”
Senate Democrats have implied or stated openness to adding seats to the Supreme Court after Republicans moved ahead with confirming Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court before Election Day. Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden said last week his decision on court packing hinges on how Senate Republicans “handle” Barrett’s confirmation. And two potential members of his administration also approved of the controversial tactic in comments on Sunday.
Dingell added that she wasn’t “happy” with the speed of Barrett’s confirmation in the Senate.
Many Senate Democrats have also tried to bolster their court-packing effort by redefining the term, claiming Republicans have already been engaged in the practice for years. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D., N.Y.) argued last week that Republicans engaged in court packing by filling vacancies on the Supreme Court and other federal courts.
With out any more Republicans getting gutless on Monday Judge Amy Coney Barrett will become Justice Amy Coney Barrett.
The full Senate will vote next Monday, October 26, to confirm Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the U.S. Supreme Court, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) announced Tuesday.
“We will be voting to confirm Justice-to-be Barrett next Monday and I think that will be another signature accomplishment in our effort to put on the courts, the federal courts, men and women who believe in a quaint notion that the job of a judge is to actually follow the law,” McConnell told reporters after the Senate Republicans’ weekly lunch.
The Senate Judiciary Committee will vote Barrett out of the panel on Thursday at 1:00 P.M.
McConnell’s announcement comes after affirmed that he has secured enough votes to confirm Barrett to the nation’s highest Court.
With a 53-47 Republican majority, and just two GOP senators opposed, Trump’s nominee is on a glide path to confirmation that will seal a conservative hold on the court for years to come.
McConnell said Monday that Barrett demonstrated over several days of public hearings the “sheer intellectual horsepower that the American people deserve to have on the Supreme Court.”
Without the votes to stop Barrett’s ascent, Democrats have few options left. They are searching for two more GOP senators to break ranks and halt confirmation, but that seems unlikely. Never before as a court nominee been voted on so close to a presidential election.
This whole mess can be laid at the door of former Senate Majority Leader Dingy Harry Reid.
The success of President Donald Trump’s last two nominations to the Supreme Court hinges largely on a sequence of tactical errors made by Senate Democrats.
The ill-fated filibuster of Justice Neil Gorsuch left Democrats without procedural weapons to blunt the far more contentious nomination of Justice Brett Kavanaugh. After the Kavanaugh hearings devolved into an angry and lurid spectacle, Republicans netted two Senate seats that are now the margin of victory for Judge Amy Coney Barrett’s confirmation, expected later this month. Barrett’s confirmation, which fills out a 6-3 conservative supermajority on the High Court, likely would not have come about but for those miscalculations.
Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D., Minn.) acknowledged that Barrett’s confirmation seemed inevitable even before her testimony to the Senate Judiciary Committee this week.
“We do not have some secret, clever procedural way to stop this sham. Let’s be honest,” Klobuchar said. “And as good as we are, there’s probably not going to be some brilliant cross-examination that is going to change the trajectory of this nomination.”
The prime mistake was made in 2017, when Democrats filibustered the Gorsuch nomination, even though his confirmation would not have changed the ideological balance of the Court. It was a doomed gambit, as it prompted Senate Republicans to turn the nuclear key and abolish the 60-vote procedural threshold for Supreme Court nominees. Legal observers spanning the ideological spectrum warned Democrats that strategic patience would pay dividends should another vacancy arise.
“Imagine if in a year or so Justices Breyer, Ginsburg, or Kennedy leave the Court. Then things get MUCH worse from the point of view of progressives,” UC Irvine professor Rick Hasen wrote at the time on his Election Law Blog. “Better to save the firepower for that fight.”
Hasen was vindicated in short order. The Kavanaugh nomination was subsumed by allegations of past sexual misconduct that inflamed partisan passions. Had Democrats kept their powder dry, Republicans would have had the ugly task of breaking a filibuster in the midst of a frenzied national reckoning with gender dynamics, sexual impropriety, and due process.
Republicans might have managed a rule-change in that environment, but it would have been a supremely difficult effort. The GOP had just 51 seats at that time. One Republican, Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R., Alaska), voted against Kavanaugh’s confirmation, making her an unlikely vote to abolish the filibuster in that setting. Whether other moderates such as Sen. Susan Collins (R., Maine) or former Sen. Jeff Flake (R., Ariz.) would have backed the nuclear option is an open question. Sen. Joe Manchin (D., W. Va.) was the only Democrat who voted to confirm Kavanaugh, but he would have been a near-certain vote against the rule change.
GOP veterans of the wild Kavanaugh rumpus credit Democratic tactics with the Senate victories that are making Barrett’s confirmation possible.
“President Trump should give Chuck Schumer a Presidential Medal of Freedom. The Schumer-led utter buffoonery during the Kavanaugh confirmation forced four Senate Democrats into early retirement—and guaranteed that a Justice Amy Coney Barrett joins the new 6-3 Clarence Thomas Court,” said Mike Davis, a former Republican Senate lawyer who now runs an advocacy group that supports Trump judicial nominees.
Some red-state Democrats, such as former Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (D., N.D.), were longshots for reelection to begin with; but others, such as former Sens. Bill Nelson (D., Fla.), Claire McCaskill (D., Mo.), and Joe Donnelly (D., Ind.), ran competitive campaigns through the fall. Nelson lost by about 10,000 votes out of some 8 million cast.
McCaskill and Donnelly have since attributed their defeats in significant part to the emotional currents the Kavanaugh confirmation unleashed.
McCaskill told NPR that Dr. Christine Blasey Ford’s allegations should have been disclosed and investigated as soon as Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s (D., Calif.) office obtained them. Their late appearance legitimated “the very real perception that this was an 11th-hour attempt to gut a guy,” she said.
“I don’t think my vote hurt me as much as the spectacle that occurred,” McCaskill said. “There were mistakes made by my party in terms of how that was handled.”
Republicans will reap the benefits of those mistakes later this month. Were two of the four Democrats who lost in 2018 still in the chamber, Republicans would have maintained only a narrow 51-49 advantage. As it is, Barrett’s confirmation seems all but inevitable.
I look for the DemocRats to produce some last minute information to stop the vote to confirm Amy Coney Barrett for the Supreme Court.
Dianne Feinstein produced a last minute letter to try to derail Brett Kavanaugh’s conformation.
Judge Amy Coney Barrett’s nomination to the Supreme Court cleared its first hurdle when Senate Judiciary Committee Republicans sidestepped objections from Democrats Thursday to ultimately move forward on scheduling a confirmation vote.
The Hill reported Barrett’s nomination will receive a vote on Oct. 22 at 1 p.m. EST, which will move it out of committee and prepare it for a floor vote at a later date.
Both Democrats objected to moving her confirmation to the next step in an attempt to delay the process.
They were rebuffed by Graham.
Other Democratic senators exited the committee as Graham, the Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman, moved the process closer to the goal line.
NBC News reported Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell expects to begin floor consideration on confirming Barrett the day after the vote to move the judge out of committee.
Barrett could receive a final confirmation vote on the Senate floor the following week.
That would place Barrett on the court before Election Day on Nov. 3.
Barrett was first nominated by President Donald Trump on Sept. 26 to fill the vacant seat left behind by late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg last month.
Thursday wrapped up four days of hearings, wherein Democrats challenged Barrett on a number of issues, but the proceedings were much tamer than in 2018 when Democrats turned the confirmation hearings of Justice Brett Kavanaugh into an all-out attack on his character.
Despite the relatively calm nature of the Barrett hearings this week, Democrats have made it clear they oppose both her nomination and her confirmation.
According to NBC News, the word “sham” was used by numerous Democrats when referring to Barrett’s hearings and likely confirmation following the proceedings on Thursday.
Among other complaints, the minority party in the Senate complained the process to replace Ginsburg was “rushed.”
Blumenthal said on Thursday, “The consequence of this rushed process is that we’ve given inadequate scrutiny to this nominee. I move to delay these proceedings so that we can do our job.”
Meanwhile, Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California complained, ”This is being done without any precedent in the time at least that I’ve been on this committee.”
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Added Feinstein, “It’s being done I guess to show power and push someone through.”
Democrats are at a 53-47 disadvantage in the Senate.
That number includes independent Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont, who caucuses with the Democrats.
Barrett is expected to be confirmed, as even if there are up to three unexpected GOP defections, Vice President Mike Pence could break a 50/50 tie by casting the deciding vote.
The country will know more about an exact date of a vote for Barrett’s confirmation once McConnell becomes involved in floor considerations next week.
But it is becoming more apparent the country will now have a Supreme Court which is at full capacity by Nov. 3, and that court would be solidified with a strong conservative 5-4 majority.
While Barrett’s confirmation would technically give the court’s conservative wing a 6-3 majority, Chief Justice John Roberts has drawn the ire of conservatives in recent years for his propensity toward siding with the court’s liberals in cases involving issues such as abortion and the Affordable Care Act.
Roberts’ voting patterns elicited a rare rebuke from Pence in August.
The vice president referred to Roberts, who was nominated by former President George W. Bush, as “a disappointment to conservatives.”
“The 14th Amendment requires districts to apportion congressional seats based on ‘counting the whole number of persons in each State, excluding Indians not taxed,’” Politico reported.
The White House views the numbers used to appropriate representation through the Census differently.
In a memorandum from July, President Trump ordered that illegal aliens not be considered by the Census numbers when used to allocate representation.
“The Constitution does not specifically define which persons must be included in the apportionment base,” the White House argued.
The memo further stated that “Although the Constitution requires the ‘persons in each State, excluding Indians not taxed,’ to be enumerated in the census, that requirement has never been understood to include in the apportionment base every individual physically present within a State’s boundaries at the time of the census.”
“Instead, the term ‘persons in each State’ has been interpreted to mean that only the ‘inhabitants’ of each State should be included.”
In the memo, Trump then ordered the use of numbers of illegal immigrants stricken from consideration when restructuring districts.
“For the purpose of the reapportionment of Representatives following the 2020 census, it is the policy of the United States to exclude from the apportionment base aliens who are not in a lawful immigration status under the Immigration and Nationality Act,” the memo said.
“Excluding these illegal aliens from the apportionment base is more consonant with the principles of representative democracy underpinning our system of Government.”
“Affording congressional representation, and therefore formal political influence, to States on account of the presence within their borders of aliens who have not followed the steps to secure a lawful immigration status under our laws undermines those principles,” it added.
“I have accordingly determined that respect for the law and protection of the integrity of the democratic process warrant the exclusion of illegal aliens from the apportionment base, to the extent feasible and to the maximum extent of the President’s discretion under the law.”
The memo drew the fury of Democrats and immigration activists.
It has long been argued that including illegal inhabitants of states in the Census gives Democrats a representative advantage, which is then perpetuated by more and more illegal immigrants flocking to states which refuse to enforce immigration law.
Even if the high court agrees with the White House on the issue, it is unclear if a ruling could come in time to make a difference with regard to this year’s Census and its use for legislative redistricting.
After Joe Pee Pads Biden has destroyed the Second Amendment he will turn his wrath toward the First Amendment.
The purpose of the Supreme Court, as it’s used here in this country at this time, is to determine whether or not legislation is constitutional or not. The same is true for lower federal courts as well. They’re supposed to take the Supreme Court’s rulings and apply them evenly across other cases, then judge on the constitutionality of new issues as they arise until SCOTUS rules differently.
However, as we’ve seen, it doesn’t necessarily work that way. Anti-gun judges have been ruling against the Second Amendment for decades, often ignoring the text of the amendment and inserting their own feelings and opinions, pretending those somehow carry more weight than “shall not be infringed.”
With the nomination of Amy Coney Barrett, we may finally see the end of some of this stuff. At least, in theory.
Let’s start with a definition, as a curious number of politicians on the left are now pretending the phrase “court packing” refers to a president filling a vacant seat in an election year.
Dictionary.com puts it this way: “court packing: an unsuccessful attempt by President Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1937 to appoint up to six additional justices to the Supreme Court, which had invalidated a number of his New Deal laws.”
“Court packing” is clearly about increasing the number of U.S Supreme Court justices in an attempt to advance a particular political agenda. And that is what is being threatened.
With the confirmation hearings for Judge Amy Coney Barrett—President Trump’s nominee to fill the vacancy on the Supreme Court that opened with the passing of Ruth Bader Ginsburg–now under way in the U.S. Senate, some on the left have been calling for Joe Biden, if he does win the presidency, to do what FDR couldn’t. They want him to pack the U.S. Supreme Court with four or more new, and likely anti-Second Amendment, justices.
This way, even if Judge Barrett becomes Justice Barrett, her stated belief that a judge should not legislate from the bench would be nullified should Biden pack the court with jurists who feel the opposite. This would turn the U.S. Supreme Court into a super legislature of men and women with lifetime appointments.
A Biden court-packing scheme would be an America-altering progressive power grab. A power grab that Biden and his running mate, Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.), won’t tell us whether they’d do or not.
That refusal to say one way or another is troubling.
Look, I get the desire to pack the Court. It’s wrong, but I get where it comes from. What the left doesn’t grok is that if you pack the court, there’s little reason for the next Republican president with a GOP-controlled Congress not to do the same thing. Mutually assured destruction really needs to be the name of the game here. No one should pack the Court because doing so will be a green light for the next guys.
That’s the last thing anyone needs.
And, honestly, it wouldn’t take much for either Biden or Harris to say as much, to point out that if the left tries to pack the Court, that’s just a green light to the right to do the same. But that would require them to differentiate that from what President Trump has done, namely fill vacancies as his office requires but which they’ve decided to call court packing.
We all know that Biden and Harris won’t appoint pro-gun justices if they pack the court. Instead, they’ll find judges who will repeal Heller, McDonald, and everything else that upholds the Second Amendment, but they won’t stop there. No, they’ll likely hear cases and rule that pretty much any bit of gun control isn’t just acceptable, but constitutional, which gives the green light to every anti-gun state to step up their efforts.
That is a big problem.
As if you needed another reason not to vote for Biden.
I am surprised that Romney is voting to confirm Amy Coney Barrett to the high court.
Utah Republican Sen. Mitt Romney said he will vote to confirm Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the U.S. Supreme Court.
“After meeting with Judge Barrett and carefully reviewing her record and her testimony, I intend to vote in favor of her confirmation to the Supreme Court,” Romney said in a statement released Thursday.
“She is impressive, and her distinguished legal and academic credentials make it clear that she is exceptionally well qualified to serve as our next Supreme Court justice,” he added.
“I am confident that she will faithfully apply the law and our Constitution, impartially and regardless of policy preferences,” Romney said.
In September, Romney said he would vote for a nominee based on their qualifications, not based on the hearing’s proximity to the election.
“My decision regarding a Supreme Court nomination is not the result of a subjective test of ‘fairness’ which, like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder,” Romney, R-Utah, said in a September statement. “It is based on the immutable fairness of following the law, which in this case is the Constitution and precedent. The historical precedent of election-year nominations is that the Senate generally does not confirm an opposing party’s nominee but does confirm a nominee of its own.”
The senator continued: “The Constitution gives the President the power to nominate and the Senate the authority to provide advice and consent on Supreme Court nominees. Accordingly, I intend to follow the Constitution and precedent in considering the President’s nominee. If the nominee reaches the Senate floor, I intend to vote based upon their qualifications.”
Romney expanded on his logic in subsequent comments to the press:
“We may have a court that has a more conservative bent,” than it has had in recent decades, Romney said after his announcement. “But my liberal friends have over many decades gotten used to the idea of having a liberal court. And that’s not written in the stars.”
He added: “It’s also appropriate for a nation that’s if you will center-right to have a court which reflects center-right points of view. Which again are not changing the law from what it states but instead following the law and following the Constitution.”
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell announced on Thursday that Barrett has enough votes to be confirmed to the U.S. Supreme Court.
McConnell said Barrett will likely clear the Senate Judiciary Committee on October 22nd and receive a full vote on the 23rd.
“We have the votes,” McConnell said Thursday in Kentucky after taking part in early balloting for the Nov. 3 election.
Barrett has been ready all week for all of the leading and bizarre questions from Democratic senators during her confirmation hearings.
The Scalia Legacy will continue on with Amy Coney Barrett on the high court.
Column: The lasting influence of the legendary Supreme Court justice
“Enough to field a baseball team.” That was the late Justice Antonin Scalia’s response when asked how many children he had. And he and his wife Maureen’s nine children have themselves parented, as of this week, 40 grandchildren. How big is the Scalia family? So big that, at the moment, it would not be allowed to hold an in-person gathering in the justice’s home state of New Jersey.
Even that count might not be accurate. Watching Judge Amy Coney Barrett testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee this week, I couldn’t help thinking that the Scalia family is larger than the individuals directly related to him. In both her September 26 remarks at the White House and her October 12 opening statement to the committee, Barrett spoke of the influence Scalia had on her life and identified herself with his approach to the law. “His judicial philosophy was straightforward: A judge must apply the law as written, not as the judge wishes it were,” Barrett told the senators. “Sometimes that approach meant reaching results that he did not like. But as he put it in one of his best-known opinions, that is what it means to say we have a government of laws, not men.”
Whether it was for the students he taught, or the clerks he hired, or the lawyers he mentored, or the readers of his work, Scalia modeled a form of jurisprudence rooted in the text of the Constitution and in the American political tradition. His approach came to be called originalism (in matters of constitutional interpretation) and textualism (in matters of statutory interpretation). But his legacy is far greater than these contributions to legal terminology and methodology. What this son of an Italian immigrant accomplished was nothing less than a revolution in the law—and the promulgation of a distinctly American conservatism that is needed now more than ever.
It was Scalia who was among the first faculty advisers of the Federalist Society, and who addressed the society’s first national gathering in 1982. Along with his colleagues Robert Bork and Laurence Silberman, Scalia stood for the idea that judges should interpret the Constitution and statutes based on their original public meaning. The clarity of his argument, the force of his intellect, and the charm of his conversation enlarged the audience for his views. That audience exploded in size after President Reagan elevated him to the Supreme Court in 1986. Over time, the strength of originalism’s reputation in legal circles became so overpowering that some liberal judges, such as Justice Elena Kagan, felt it necessary to describe themselves, however ironically, as “originalists.”
Scalia pointed to his decision upholding the constitutionality of flag-burning as proof that originalism is not a mask for conservative politics. And there have been plenty of decisions—most recently Justice Neil Gorsuch’s opinion in Bostock—where self-described originalists and textualists arrived at places conservatives did not expect. But there is nonetheless an integral relationship between originalism and conservatism. What American conservatism seeks to preserve is the institutional and philosophical inheritance of the American Founding. This inheritance is codified in our enabling documents: the Constitution (as amended), the organic laws of the United States (which include the Declaration of Independence and the Northwest Ordinance), and the Federalist Papers. It is through fidelity to these words, as the Founders understood them at the time, that conservatives defend the constitutional structure and the individual freedom it secures.
Originalism has turned out to be more than a legal doctrine. It is the common ground of American conservatism. For years, the right has tried to define a “constitutional conservatism” that would serve as the political analogue to originalism. That project has been overshadowed by the rise of national populism. But it is worth noting that the current president won his office in no small part because he pledged to nominate judges in the mold of Scalia and approved by the Federalist Society. And his most enduring legacy will be his appointments to the federal courts.
It would be difficult to name other Supreme Court justices who have had such a galvanizing effect on American politics—and who continued to play such important roles after their deaths. What accounts for Scalia’s iconic stature? The latest collection of his writings, The Essential Scalia, edited by Judge Jeffrey S. Sutton and Edward Whelan, offers some clues. “Nino loved ideas—thinking about them, talking about them, arguing about them, as well as writing about them,” Justice Kagan writes in her introduction. “That love may explain why he found it so natural to befriend colleagues with whom he often disagreed (yes, like me).” Scalia’s ability to depersonalize intellectual debate was a function of his self-confidence and sense of humor. His convictions were the result of deep reflection. But he was more than happy to defend them, and to explain why you were wrong.
What comes across most, though, is the quality of Scalia’s writing. It is clear, direct, witty, lapidary, memorable. Scalia’s opinions and dissents are famous for certain lines—”this wolf comes as a wolf”; “What Is Golf?”—but on second reading it is the way he develops his argument that most impresses. And he always makes a perfect landing. “Undoubtedly some think that the Second Amendment is outmoded in a society where our standing army is the pride of our Nation, where well-trained police forces provide personal security, and where gun violence is a serious problem,” he wrote in Heller (2008). “That is perhaps debatable, but what is not debatable is that it is not the role of this Court to pronounce the Second Amendment extinct.”ADVERTISING
These aren’t judicial decisions. They are essays. And like great literature they will reverberate far into the future. As Antonin Scalia’s extended family, biological and philosophical, continues to grow.
U.S.A. –-(AmmoLand.com)- A billionaire-backed gun prohibition lobbying group, the Seattle-based Alliance for Gun Responsibility, has launched an all-out crusade to prevent confirmation of Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the U.S. Supreme Court, declaring in a hysteria-laden email blast the nominee has “confirmed her reckless and extreme Second Amendment views.”
Only a day earlier, anti-gun billionaire Michael Bloomberg’s Everytown for Gun Safety released its own email swipe at Judge Barrett, asserting “Over 37,000 people have told their U.S. Senators to oppose the confirmation of Amy Coney Barrett… If our U.S. Senators make her a Supreme Court Justice, it’ll be a dream come true for the NRA, and hundreds of gun safety laws across the country will be at risk.” (Bold face in original.) And on Thursday, Everytown was claiming more than 48,000 “gun sense supporters” have contacted the Senate, demanding no confirmation vote before the inauguration.
Nothing more clearly exhibits the gun ban lobby’s vehemence toward the Second Amendment than these desperate messages, nor their fears about the dismantling of their gun prohibition agenda, while Judge Barrett has been scoring high marks for her performance before the Senate Judiciary Committee. Fox News has been keeping a running account of the hearings.
The Alliance message acknowledged, “We are working harder than ever to oppose Barrett’s nomination but we know that we must also focus on protecting our progress. That means fighting to elect leaders who have the courage to take bold action to stop gun violence and working to defeat the gun lobby’s bogus challenges to Initiative 1639.”
I-1639 is a gun control initiative passed by Washington State voters in 2018. It stripped young adults in the 18-20-year age group of the right to purchase any semi-automatic rifle, which the measure described as “semiautomatic assault rifles.” The definition applies to any self-loading rifle, including .22-caliber target and hunting rifles. It is being challenged in federal court on constitutional grounds by the National Rifle Association and Second Amendment Foundation, two firearm retailers and three individuals in the affected age group.
The Alliance is making the most of Judge Barrett’s dissent in the case of Kanter v. Barr, a Second Amendment case in which Rickey Kanter, a convicted felon in Wisconsin, contended his crime shouldn’t disqualify him from owning a firearm. Kanter pleaded guilty to a single count of mail fraud in 2011, a non-violent felony. He completed his prison sentence, paid restitution and applied to the attorney general for relief from disability in order to regain his Second Amendment rights.
The case may be read here, with Judge Barrett’s dissent beginning on Page 27. She maintained:
“18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(1) and Wisconsin Statute § 941.29(1m) would stand on solid footing if their categorical bans were tailored to serve the governments’ undeniably compelling interest in protecting the public from gun violence. But their dispossession of all felons—both violent and nonviolent—is unconstitutional as applied to Kanter, who was convicted of mail fraud for falsely representing that his company’s therapeutic shoe inserts were Medicare-approved and billing Medicare accordingly. Neither Wisconsin nor the United States has introduced data sufficient to show that disarming all nonviolent felons substantially advances its interest in keeping the public safe. Nor have they otherwise demonstrated that Kanter himself shows a proclivity for violence. Absent evidence that he either belongs to a dangerous category or bears individual markers of risk, permanently disqualifying Kanter from possessing a gun violates the Second Amendment.”
The Alliance email argued, “This position goes against nearly every single federal appeals court decision on the issue. If it weren’t already clear…Judge Barrett confirmed that she is the gun lobby’s dream justice.”
Restoration of rights is not unheard of. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives used to conduct “relief from disabilities” investigations for non-violent felonies until funding was cut for that program.
The full depth of the anti-gun lobby’s fears about a Barrett confirmation come in this sentence, which was also printed in bold face in their email: “If Judge Barrett is confirmed, virtually all of our progress on gun violence prevention is at stake.”
Translation: Decades of restrictive, perhaps even unconstitutional, gun control laws might be challenged successfully with a pro-Second Amendment majority on the high court, which could be made possible by Judge Barrett’s confirmation.
The strongest evidence that anti-gunners know these laws might fail constitutional muster came in the scramble to change New York City’s overbearing handgun transport ordinance when the high court accepted the challenge of that restriction by the New York State Rifle and Pistol Association early last year. To avoid a Supreme Court review of that ordinance, it was hastily changed after the court accepted the case but before it could hold a full hearing.
The city’s awareness their gun law was in violation was revealed by the mad scramble to remove the restriction before the Supreme Court declared it unconstitutional, many gun rights activists maintain. That would have opened a door to challenges of other restrictive measures at the municipal, county or state level around the country, the very last thing gun prohibitionists want.
During questioning Wednesday, Judge Barrett’s dissent became a point of contention because Democrats tried to make it appear she wanted convicted felons to have guns more than wanted them to vote. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) took Sen. Dick Durbin (D-OH) to task for his questioning here.
If Judge Barrett is confirmed to the Supreme Court, her presence there could be a key part of Donald Trump’s legacy, whether he wins in November or is replaced by Democrat Joe Biden. If her presence does open the door to more high court consideration of Second Amendment cases, any decisions supporting and strengthening the individual right—especially carry outside the home or a ruling that semi-auto modern sporting rifles are protected—would be strong evidence for those arguing that gun control laws in general infringe on the right to keep and bear arms.
Joe Pee Pads Biden will not repudiate calls to pack the Supreme Court because it is something his leftist supporters are demanding the court be packed.
Ex-Dem AGs, Reps. call on party to repudiate efforts to add justices.
More than a dozen former Democratic officials have joined a campaign to thwart any attempt to pack the Supreme Court.
Fifteen Democrats—nine former state attorneys general and six ex-congressmen—are backing the Keep Nine Coalition. The bipartisan group opposes recent efforts by progressive Democrats to expand the Supreme Court in the event that Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden wins the election. Biden has staunchly refused to state his stance on court packing, going so far as to argue voters do not deserve to know where he stands on the matter.
Andrew Miller, the former Democratic attorney general for Virginia, said he was alarmed that many of his partymates have warmed to the idea in the wake of President Trump’s nomination of Amy Coney Barrett to succeed Ruth Bader Ginsburg on the Supreme Court. He expects the pressure to grow if Democrats capture the Senate and White House in November. Miller, who also serves as the president of the Keep Nine Coalition, said any move in that direction will undermine the rule of law.
“I think the effort will be made—assuming Joe Biden wins the presidency—to pack the court and to increase its number, probably by adding two or three justices,” he said. “I think that would be a terrible decision for the future of the Court and the future of the country.”
Court packing has rapidly gained credence in progressive Democratic circles as a way to retaliate against the likely confirmation of Barrett in the Republican-controlled Senate. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D., N.Y.) has threatened that “everything is on the table” if the Republicans confirm Barrett, and several Senate Democrats including Sens. Elizabeth Warren and Kirsten Gillibrand have also voiced support for court packing during the presidential primaries. But despite the idea’s popularity in elite circles, the vast majority of Americans—including the late Justice Ginsberg—oppose the expansion of the Supreme Court.
The Keep Nine Coalition launched before the death of Ginsberg this year. The bipartisan group—which also includes 10 Republican former legislators and attorneys general—supports a constitutional amendment to specify that the Supreme Court must be composed of nine justices. The group enlisted Democratic Rep. Collin Peterson (Minn.) and Republican congressman Denver Riggleman (Va.) to introduce the amendment in the House in January.
The Constitution does not specify the number of Supreme Court justices and gives Congress the authority to decide the size of the Court. However, the size of the Supreme Court has remained constant since the 19th century. Attempts to expand the Court in the 20th century, most notably by President Franklin D. Roosevelt, faced widespread public opposition.
Nick Rahall, a former Democratic congressman and a member of the coalition, said he hoped that the amendment would insulate the Supreme Court from the partisan politics of the day, and thus maintain its uniquely high level of trust among public institutions.
“It certainly made a great deal of sense to me … for Congress to pass the keep-nine amendment to the Constitution,” he said. “In my opinion, it is an effort to preserve the independence of our U.S. Supreme Court and to reduce the cycle of retaliation that is so prevailing in our American political life.… I think it is that cycle which has destroyed the public trust in all of our public institutions.”
According to a recent poll commissioned by the coalition, more than three out of five Americans support an amendment to specify the number of Supreme Court justices. Paul Summers, the former attorney general of Tennessee, said the poll is indicative of widespread public opposition to court packing.
“There’s an old expression that we have heard, mostly in the South, but it’s probably all over: ‘If it’s not broken, don’t fix it.’ [The Supreme Court] hadn’t been broken in 151 years. Let’s make a decision here—let’s create a firewall to keep it nine,” he said.
Update 10/15/20, 8:45 AM: A previous version of this post incorrectly stated that Paul Summers is a member of the Federalist Society.