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Kavanaugh's Elevation to the Supreme Court Is a Moment of Worrying Instability

His true impact may be less about transforming the Court’s ideology, and more about altering its status in political life.

Christy Bowe/Polaris/NewscomChristy Bowe/Polaris/NewscomBrett Kavanaugh's confirmation to the Supreme Court leaves us with more questions than answers. For starters, what effect will it have on the upcoming midterm elections—or, for that matter, on 2020? How will this alter political discourse and party tactics, especially where the court is concerned? And, perhaps overlooked during the last few weeks, how will Kavanaugh, and the Roberts Court he is now part of, rule?

My suspicion, and my worry, is that he will have a smaller direct impact than many seem to think, but that the partisan entrenchment surrounding his nomination will shake the Court to its core.

The answer to the first question seems to be that the Kavanaugh fight will boost Republicans in the Senate and Democrats in the House, probably dividing control of Congress in the process. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has said that Kavanaugh's confirmation will fuel Republican enthusiasm in November. "This has energized our base like nothing we've been able" to do, he told Bloomberg. Midterms have lower turnout than elections in presidential years; Republicans are counting on Kavanaugh to help them maintain, and perhaps expand, control of the upper chamber. Democrats, meanwhile, see Kavanaugh's confirmation as helping them in key House races, many of which are in suburban swing districts—adding to the likelihood that they regain a majority.

Kavanugh's confirmation, in other words, is likely to sharpen the partisan divide. Which brings us to the second question: How will the major parties alter their tactics and strategies going forward? Republicans are nearly certain to advertise their personal and party-wide fortitude in pushing the nomination through; McConnell, characterizing his attitude towards the Kavanaugh confirmation battle, reportedly described himself as "stronger than mule piss." (I'll take his word that mule piss is strong.) Democrats, in turn, have begun to talk more openly about procedural radicalism, from court packing, which Stormy Daniels lawyer Michael Avenatti (who also represented Kavanaugh accuser Julie Swetnick) has said should be a litmus test for Democrats in 2020, to impeaching Kavanaugh from the Supreme Court. Asked recently, neither Sens. Kamala Harris nor Cory Booker—both likely 2020 contenders—would explicitly rule out the latter possibility. Democrats may not pursue either of these options. Still, expect Washington's procedure wars to intensify.

And what of Kavanaugh as a jurist? In some ways this question has been overshadowed by the sexual assault allegations, but now that Kavanaugh has a seat on the Court, it returns to the fore.

Although Kavanaugh is replacing Anthony Kennedy, who for years has acted as the High Court's swing vote, it is Chief Justice John Roberts who is now likely to be the most frequent deciding vote in close cases. Roberts is more conservative than Kennedy in some ways, but he is an incrementalist deeply concerned with the court's legitimacy. In part because of these tendencies, I think it is unlikely—though certainly not impossible—that the Roberts Court as it currently exists will fully overturn Roe v. Wade, the case that secured a national right to abortion and that has driven much of the fight over Kavanaugh. If a sixth conservative justice were to be added, that calculus might change.

Another attack on Kavanaugh held that he might outlaw Obamacare's preexisting conditions rules, which a group of conservative state attorneys general are currently challenging. The White House has, somewhat unusually, declined to defend those rules. Here, too, I suspect that Kavanaugh will not be decisive. The case itself is legally weak; and as a lower court judge, Kavanaugh wrote an opinion that provides a playbook for upholding those rules.

Kavanaugh's judicial elevation, then, may feel more important than it actually is. Yet the perception of his pivotal status is likely to continue to drive debates about the Court, just as it drove debates about Kavanaugh's nomination. His true impact may be less about transforming the Court's ideology and more about altering its status in public life.

With Kavanaugh on the bench, it is possible, even probable, that the Supreme Court, like almost everything else in politics today, will become further subsumed by the culture war, transformed into a reality TV spectacle under a reality TV president. This transformation has been underway for decades, but Kavanaugh seems certain to accelerate it.

For those who view the Court's proper role as a vehicle for preserving the constitutional order—for checking both the authoritarian tendencies of the executive and the populist excesses of Congress—this is a moment of worrying instability. In time, the turbulence may pass, as it has before. But looming over all the questions surrounding Kavanaugh's confirmation is whether the Court, and the constitutional system it is intended to guard and protect, can maintain the authority and legitimacy it needs in order to perform its role. Kavanaugh may have survived this confirmation process, but in the process he may have the left the reputation of the Supreme Court itself more bruised and vulnerable than ever before.

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  • Longtorso, Johnny||

    Kavanaugh may have survived this confirmation process, but in the process he may have the left the reputation of the Supreme Court itself more bruised and vulnerable than ever before.

    He didn't do that, your leftist cocktail party buddies did.

  • Just Say'n||

    Just a reminder, RBG has been an open partisan for at least the past three years and we never heard any worry about damaging institutions

    www.cnn.com/2016/07/12/politic.....index.html

  • Just Say'n||

    And what the hell is the new outrage about protecting institutions? That's a conservative talking point

  • Zeb||

    We've entered a new age where talking points can be used by whomever it's convenient for at a given moment.

  • Quixote||

    They can be used, just as long as they are not delivered in the "names" of any reputable academic department chairs, especially ones employed here at NYU. Indeed, we welcome Kavenough's stabilizing presence on the highest court of our nation, because we believe he will help stamp out some of the more prurient manifestations we have been seeing lately in our classrooms and college dormitories. Above all, we hope the Court will now make it entirely clear that any form of inappropriately deadpan and insufficiently puerile "parody" is no longer allowed in this country, regardless of any "message" it might seek to convey. America's leading criminal "satire" case has left some confusion in this regard. See the documentation at:

    https://raphaelgolbtrial.wordpress.com/

  • unreligious||

    Well like many conservative talking points, they seem to have stopped talking about them in the Trump era.

  • Fancylad||

    "unreligious"
    Hahaha, Oh wow.
    With a moniker like that we know we're going to be in for some sane, well reasoned thought a la Kirkland.

  • Drake_Burrwood||

    There is a difference between "unreligious" and "unfaithed".
    One is libertarian, one is the road to madness.

  • Nyarlarrythotep||

    Never heard her talk about how the Bushes were taking revenge upon her or how the Republicans were angry because Clinton one. Kavanaugh's opening statements did -not- give me confidence in his impartiality. I didn't worry about, say, Gorsuch in that regard.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Both sides are at fault. The Republicans bear some blame for sticking with the nomination of a partisan teen masher and the Democrats are partly responsible for failing to anticipate that the Republicans would stoop so low as to put a partisan teen masher on the court.

  • Just Say'n||

    "If you didn't want us to smear him as a gang rapist then maybe you shouldn't have won the election. I'm not seeing how this is our fault"

  • buybuydandavis||

    Nice

  • BestUsedCarSales||

    Plus, having an interest in teens is a strong indicator of Kavanaugh have shit taste.

  • Drake_Burrwood||

    I suspect some Republican Polititians might put it as a refusal to negotiate with terrorists.

  • LarryA||

    the nomination of a partisan

    None of the SCOTUS justices are "nonpartisan." They all vote according to their political philosophy.

    Voters didn't elect a conservative president so he could nominate liberal justices.

  • BILKER||

    if he did commit a teenage action at least he did it with a member of the opposite sex instead of the democrat rapists doing to same sex or very young children on millionaires' air planes to caribbean islands.

  • Trumptard||

    Talk about blaming the victim.

  • ThomasD||

    Suderman trying to stay on script.

    I get that many authors here do not like Trump.

    What amazes me is their unwillingness to accept that this sordid attempted hit job is part of what got them Trump.

    The continued denial of their role in all this strikes me as nothing more than whistling past the graveyard.

  • ThomasD||

    Let me rephrase

    ...this sordid attempted hit job is an example of the sort of behaviors that got them Trump.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    +1

  • Incredulous||

    Yes, why do Reason writers insist on this biased perspective and blaming the victim?

  • This Machine Chips Fascists||

    I wonder what his secret mind shattering Nazgul name will be.

  • Echo Chamber||

    BK and Merritt Garland agreed in 93% of the cases they both heard on the appellate court.

    What a bunch of hysteronics. Move on to the next topic of outrage.

  • Just Say'n||

    There is no real difference between him and Kennedy, either. So what do you think that 7% disagreement with Garland is about that could make woketarians so upset?

  • Echo Chamber||

    Steeple are easily spooked. Never let a fundraising opportunity go to waste.

  • BestUsedCarSales||

    I've often found Steeple to have the resolve of granite.

  • Dillinger||

    all relative to the size of your steeple.

  • MatthewSlyfield||

    Size doesn't matter, it's how you use your steeple...

  • Dillinger||

    thank Jeebus my s/o believes that ha

  • Fancylad||

    Capitalism has made it this way.

  • Cathy L||

    "Hysteronics" indeed.

    You know Merrick Garland is not actually good from a libertarian perspective, right?

    And there's also not much reason to think Kavanaugh is.

  • Just Say'n||

    And you know Kennedy was not good for a libertarian perspective, either. So the court is basically unchanged. Unless there is something in that 7% disagreement that is motivating people to believe flimsy allegations of gang rape.

  • CE||

    I suspect Kennedy was more likely to check executive power than Kavanaugh will be.
    This is a win for conservatives, not libertarians. (Although Kavanaugh may be better than Garland would have been.)

  • Just Say'n||

    You're talking about the same Kennedy who sided with the majority in Hamdi v. Rumsfeld while Scalia dissented? Or the same Kennedy who sided with the majority in Kelo v. New London?

    I have literally never heard anyone refer to Kennedy as someone willing to check executive power. I fear most of you know nothing about Kennedy's rulings.

  • ||

    I have literally never heard anyone refer to Kennedy as someone willing to check executive power.

    I'm not sure the implication was so much that Kennedy is Mr. Check Executive Power as that Kavanaugh seems to view the President as a sort of elected King.

  • VinniUSMC||

    as that Kavanaugh seems to view the President as a sort of elected King.

    That should read "as that [progressives have painted Kavanaugh as a person who] seems to view the President as some sort of elected King."

  • Just Say'n||

    Obviously, Kavanaugh is no win from a libertarian perspective, but he isn't a whole lot different from Kennedy. So the court remains essentially unchanged. Which begs the question, what is it about that 7% disagreement that people are so scared of?

  • Migrant Log Chipper||

    No shit, he was a master of tap dancing around and avoiding using the actual Constitution as a reason in Oberfell.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Exactly. Any scotus justice that factors 'what the people want' into a judicial decision is bad news.

    Their decisions should often make the group pushing the issue upset, since the constitution is designed to limit not cater to social whims of the new fad.

  • Steve-O||

    I'm not surprised that Garland and Kavanaugh were together on 93% of cases.

    Most appellate court panel decisions are unanimous regardless of the panel's makeup because a large chunk of those cases are decided on procedural grounds, with most of the rest pertaining to stuff that is not really political in nature, e.g. was a given contract valid, or does a corporation fall within the ambit of a certain law? Most judges will agree about most of these things most of the time, and their political persuasions have little or nothing to do with their opinions.

    The same goes for the Supreme Court. Scalia and Ginsburg, for instance, agreed most of the time.

    It's only in that 10% or so of really sexy, i.e., politically-charged cases (abortion, 2nd Amendment, etc.) that we tend to see sharp divides. And incidentally, it's those cases that tend to grab the headlines. So what you read about the courts in the news media is only a small part of the work that the courts actually do. The fact that Kavanaugh and Garland agree 93% of the time shows little more than they both have similar views of jurisdiction and venue and know how to apply basic rules of statutory construction.

  • Zeb||

    Looks to me like the upsetness is mostly about process, not the man himself. Which really isn't Kavanaugh's fault. Would be nice to see more focus on his 4th amendment jurisprudence, for example, and less on the circus that was mostly ginned up by the Dems.

  • LarryA||

    A lot of the liberal outrage was that Kavanaugh was nominated by Donald Trump.

    I think, had Trump nominated an anti-gun, pro-abortion, flaming socialist, that Feinstein, Schumer, et all would still have wanted to delay until after the mid-term.

  • ||

    Move on to the next topic of outrage.

    Where's OBL to remind us that Muehler hasn't wrapped up his investigation yet?

    Wouldn't it be an awesome comedy of errors if miscommunication or just dumb luck between Muehler and the congressional democrats had them impeaching/attempting to impeach both Kavanaugh and Trump two weeks before the mid-term election?

  • Echo Chamber||

    Is that Muehler investigation still a thing?

    I expect a fresh outrage by Monday.

  • vek||

    I would imagine 99% of the hoopla is about GUNZ and BABY KILLIN'!

    I don't care much either way about abortion personally, although I think it should be legal from a libertarian perspective.

    Kav should be legit on 2A though, and gun grabbers don't like that much. I would also imagine he will side with conservative thinking on most typical conservative issues, which lefties also hate. The downside is he probably won't be awesome on some civil liberties, but we'll see.

    But I'll settle for being solid on 2A, and no worse than anybody else on other stuff.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    It was like an armed coup, really, when you think about it.

  • Tony||

    If by arms you mean penis and by coup you mean forcing a woman on a bed while attempting to rape her. If only the Nazis were shitfaced drunk, amirite?

  • Just Say'n||

    You sound more bummed out than ENB. In hindsight maybe having Hilary's rural outreach coordinator being based in Brooklyn wasn't the best of ideas

  • Tony||

    In hindsight maybe Hillary should have been more flirtatious toward Putin.

  • Just Say'n||

    I forgot you are still insane

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    You forgot about all the times she tried to get him to press her big red button.

  • Tony||

    You're implying that the entire Mueller investigation--run entirely by Republicans--is a conspiracy, and I'm insane?

  • Just Say'n||

    Spoiler: War propaganda is a bipartisan affair. And it's not a coincidence that all the Russia leaks have stopped after the president started arming Ukraine.

    I predict Mueller will come up with as much facts to substantiate the conspiracy as Democrats did against Kavanaugh, ie. none

  • Just Say'n||

    Or does a Thai prostitute hold the key to blow the whole case wide open?

    Resident conspiracy theorist, ENB, will have more nonsense on this later

  • TuIpa||

    Sex worker. Thai sex worker.

  • Microaggressor||

    What's next on the euphemism treadmill when "sex worker" is deemed too hurtful to feelings?

  • TuIpa||

    Satisfaction consultant.

  • Fats of Fury||

    ASS-ociat

  • Fats of Fury||

    ASS-ociate

  • Fats of Fury||

    Ass-ociate

  • Zeb||

    I believe prostitute is a proper subset of sex worker.

  • kevrob||

    Certified emission technician.

  • wreckinball||

    Yes and you are as dumb as shit

  • Seamus||

    In hindsight maybe Hillary should have been more flirtatious toward Putin

    She tried, but when she tried saying "reset" in a sultry voice, it came out as "overload" in her usual nerve-jangling shriek.

  • ||

    If only the Nazis were shitfaced drunk, amirite?

    We'd have ended up with 12 million more blond haired, blue-eyed Jews?

    I mean, Hitler?

  • Len Bias||

    Hey Tony - Bill and Hillary are embarking on a massive speaking tour. You should go and gaze lovingly at the man who raped and harassed more women than Kavanaugh and Thomas combined (allegedly) and then come back and tell us how blindly partisan we are. I'm sure they'll have some talking points for you to mindlessly repeat ad nauseam.

  • Tony||

    I never supported Bill in any election, as I was in middle school and a Republican. I also don't blame Hillary for her husband's alleged indiscretions, because that would be wrong. Bark up another tree. I don't claim to be nonpartisan.

  • ||

    "If a person is not a liberal when he is twenty, he has no heart; if he is not a conservative when he is forty, he has no head."

    Witness Tony:

    I was in middle school and a Republican
  • Zeb||

    I think most people when they are 13 either don't care, follow what their parents believe, or rebel and reflexively go with the opposite of what their parents believe.

  • Seamus||

    Except for those who discover Ayn Rand at that age and go insane about what they see as her unified field theory for politics, ethics, economics, literature, and everything else. (Hopefully they sober up in no more than a couple of years.)

  • Get To Da Chippah||

    Don't you blame her for not believing Bill's victims?

  • Tony||

    As much as you blame Mrs. Kavanaugh for his.

  • ||

    As much as you blame Mrs. Kavanaugh for his.

    You're pathetic.

  • Vulgar Madman||

    Tonys drug of choice is airplane glue.

  • Mock-star||

    "Tonys drug of choice is airplane glue."

    Credible.

  • MatthewSlyfield||

    But then we aren't the ones claiming that every woman with an uncorroborated, evidence-free accusation must be believed.

    If you don't blame Hillary for not believing Bill's accusers, you are a hypocrite.

    If we don't blame Mrs. Kavanaugh for not believing Ford, we are being self consistent.

  • NashTiger||

    Did Mrs Kavanaugh threaten, intimidate, and publically disparage her husband's "victims"

  • Naaman Brown||

    Hillary defended Bill by attacking his victims. There was more evidence that they were actual victims than was ever offered against Kavanaugh.

  • Naaman Brown||

    Hillary defended Bill by attacking his victims. There was more evidence that they were actual victims than was ever offered against Kavanaugh.

  • kevrob||

    Any sane, non-Catholic woman would have divorced Bill for his "antics" pre-1992. HRC, being power-mad, decided to stay hitched to the engine she figured would get her closest to the levers of power: WJBC's "charisma."

  • DWB||

    Maybe you should have thought about that before you decided to use the court to cheat in the culture war.

    A "living" constitution is no constitution at all -- SCOTUS has zero legitimacy.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    +1

  • Alcibiades||

    It might make Democrats think again before attempting to destroy a man in front of the nation and world purely for political revenge...but of course it won't.

  • ||

    If they get clobbered in the midterms, it just may.

  • Get To Da Chippah||

    I expect they'll just REEEEEEE even louder and septuple down on identity politics.

  • ||

    But if it doesn't win elections, they'll be doing it from street corners. Which is fine.

  • buybuydandavis||

    "REEEEEE more!"

    I think I'll try that instead of "Cry more!" for a while.

    More kek.

  • retiredfire||

    They got clobbered after 0blamocare. They didn't learn that lesson.

  • Weigel's Cock Ring||

    That's so fucking rich: lowlife scumbags like you smear a man in about the most disgusting way imaginable, and then when that fails you give us the faux concern trolling about the deligitimization of our institutions.

  • Brandybuck||

    I sort of missed Suderman's speech before the Senate committee. Can you summarize for us?

  • JesseAz||

    Pssstt. Dummy. Yeah you. Suderman has articles discussing kavanaugh the last 2 weeks. It wasn't just senators smearing him.

  • Tony||

    At least he wasn't gang raped.

  • ||

    At least he wasn't gang raped.

    I'm just relieved that the verdict of Kavanaugh's job interview is that she wasn't gang raped either.

  • BestUsedCarSales||

    Do you believe the accusation that he was the manager of rape gang?

  • Tony||

    I have no frame of reference for what drunk heterosexual frat douches from private boys' schools in the 1980s do with their weekends, but I somehow doubt it involves much chivalry.

  • BestUsedCarSales||

    That wasn't the question, and that wasn't what you insinuated. Your comment alluded to the Swetnick allegation of him either being a gang raper or organizing gang rapes. So, I'm curious if you believe that allegation.

  • wreckinball||

    God you have zero frame of reference for sure. You are as dumb as shit

  • Cathy L||

    lowlife scumbags like you smear a man in about the most disgusting way imaginable

    lol

  • Just Say'n||

    I'd hate to agree with Weigel, but you thought he was a gang rapist with less evidence to back it up than the Rolling Stone fake rape allegations. I'd say that's the move of a scumbag

  • Seamus||

    Weigel was a gang rapist? I knew it!

  • Brandybuck||

    So your argument is that no one with a cloud of controversy should ever be confirmed? Doesn't that lead to even greater distortions of the body politic than merely confirming the qualifications of a candidate?

  • jcw||

    Strawman alert. That's taking inferences and assumptions to a fun level.

  • ThomasD||

    Yes it's called drawing an inference, aka taking something to it's logical conclusion.

    It may not be an accurate reflection of where a speaker was actually going (or even that they were intending to go any further) but it is not a strawman.

    If Suderman does not intend his argument to imply what has been suggested he is certainly able to clarify the question.

  • Cathy L||

    So your argument is that no one with a cloud of controversy should ever be confirmed?

    Is it? Where does he say that?

  • TuIpa||

    "?"

  • damikesc||

    Umm, that is EXACTLY the issue here.

    There is still, literally, zero evidence he did ANYTHING. This "cloud of controversy" was ginned up out of absolutely nothing. Why should somebody be denied a job because people lie about them?

  • VinniUSMC||

    Not even a cloud of controversy, more like a smearing of controversy.

  • Pro Libertate||

    As a Republican appointee, he's no radical. And the Democrats were the ones who went to DEFCON 1. Trump could have easily appointed a much more conservative justice, after all.

    I really don't get Reason's position on this. I'd be fine with arguments that any appointee isn't libertarian enough, but that doesn't really seem to be their main beef (agree about the 4th Amendment concerns). We want "balance?" What the heck does that mean? The left is really bad on constitutional issues, with only a few that are +freedom. How about advocating constitionalists, like Gorsuch instead?

  • Just Say'n||

    Abortion is a jealous god and you shall have no civil liberties before it

  • Echo Chamber||

    Nevermind that overriding prior precedents doesn't make it illegal, but sends it back to the states for further gnashing of teeth and rending of garments

  • Longtobefree||

    Wailing, don't forget wailing - - - - - - -

  • Quo Usque Tandem||

    ...out in the darkness. That part is important too. You gnash mush better when it's dark.

  • Gilbert Martin||

    And cold.

    Winter is coming.

  • Dave Boz||

    Yes indeedy. Democrats have brought the whole circus to the Senate, and let the elephants shit on the carpet, just to keep abortion legal in Utah. Is abortion really that important?

  • Fancylad||

    Dead black babies have been an important plank of the DNC since they lost the civil war.

  • Zeb||

    Yeah, "balance" is mostly about abortion. And I get that to some extent. I want legal abortion to remain protected as it is, more or less.
    But pretty much everything else I care about, the "conservative" side is better on. Free speech (which still feels a bit weird to say) and gun rights are particularly poorly defended by the left these days. If abortion is restricted, I think that the pendulum is much more likely to swing back the other way than if speech or gun rights are restricted in any major way. Especially guns. If we lose that one, it will be a really tough one to get back without violence.

  • Brett Bellmore||

    The left were never good on free speech out of principles. They merely figured that they wouldn't get to be the censors. Now that they've changed their minds about that, it automatically follows that they're getting increasingly enthusiastic about censorship.

    Especially since they've figured out their arguments aren't very persuasive if the other side can be heard.

  • JesseAz||

    Why does a woman need more than 5 months to contemplate murder? Most of the sane world has a 20 week cutoff date for casual abortion. The horror if we follow suit. Got to wait til that sucker is kicking to kill him, amirite.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    I really don't get Reason's position on this.

    Reason doesn't have a position on this... it's just a bunch of random writers typing opinions and throwing their results on Gillespie's desk. Pretty sure Gillespie doesn't even read them before hitting 'submit'.

  • Just Say'n||

    Not true. He rejected that opinion piece that Richie Cunningham submitted and they go way back

  • Cyto||

    I don't think Gillespie makes those calls any more... aren't we in a new era now?

  • Zeb||

    He's still the online editor, I think. Which I believe means he's in charge of H&R.

  • Pro Libertate||

    Too much power. We need checks and balances, like a commenter czar.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    The left is really bad on constitutional issues, with only a few that are +freedom. How about advocating constitionalists, like Gorsuch instead?

    But back to being serious, I'm guessing a real constitutionalist would garner even more "annoying screeching" from the left than a milquetoast conservative.

    Because, you know, a real constitutionalist would limit government which is way worse than the wrong kind of bigger government.

  • Quo Usque Tandem||

    Well yeah, what would they all do then, if not for fucking with our miserable little lives?

  • Zeb||

    The thing is, as good as it might be long-term, cutting the government down to constitutional size would fuck with a lot of people's miserable little lives in the short term. Which makes it practically very difficult, no matter who is on the court. Presidents and legislators have ways of threatening the court as FDR figured out (and they can always just ignore it like Jackson).

  • Cyto||

    A real constitutionalist, should he ever make it to the committee, would probably just be shot on sight.

    A real constitutionalist would be striking down 90% of everything the government is doing - even most of the really good stuff that everyone agrees they should be doing.

    The constitution is really stifling, the way it is actually written. In fact, I doubt you could make a workable government if you actually stuck to the letter of the law.

    First, all campaign laws about finance and disclosures and whatnot would be unconstitutional. "Shall make no law" on free speech is an absolute prohibition. So all of the rules about what you can and cannot say, who can pay for it, etc... gone.

    Next, all gun control laws are out. Totally unconstitutional. It says "shall not be infringed". That's absolute as well.

    We haven't even gotten started, and they'd already have had you shot.

  • Pro Libertate||

    Less unconstitutional would be nice.

  • CE||

    The constitution is really stifling, the way it is actually written. In fact, I doubt you could make a workable government if you actually stuck to the letter of the law.

    Feature, not bug

  • Rich Dobbs||

    Maybe the original constitution, but reconstruction amendments just made it a confused mess instead of a plan for organizing governments. Any amendment that needs a section 2 is most likely a federal power grab.

  • chipper me timbers||

    And you haven't even gotten to the commerce clause BS and the total disregard for the 9th and 10th amendments. A true originalist would eviscerate the federal code. damn what a nice daydream fantasy that is.

  • LarryA||

    The constitution is really stifling, the way it is actually written.
    True. And it "stifles" government. Which means government can't stifle people. Which in a free country is the way it should be.

  • ||

    While I'm not overly enthused by Kavanaugh, he is a fan of the separation of powers and non-delegation doctrine. He has referred to vague statues as "a judicially orchestrated shift of power from Congress to the Executive" and underscored that it is "atextual." In other words, he's in lock-step with Gorsuch on this underratted, underdiscussed, and very important principle of jurisprudence. While we won't see a whole-cloth unraveling of the administrative state, we should see continued checks to executive overreach and insistence that the legislators actually do their job.

  • Pro Libertate||

    A female constitionalist, then?

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    Make it a trans female, and you've got yourself a deal.

  • Pro Libertate||

    Anyone who just votes against the government works for me.

  • Mickey Rat||

    Even the positions that the Left is good on the outcome, their reasoning behind it usually is bad from a libertarian perspective (getting there from an equal results rationale rather than a liberty one).

  • buybuydandavis||

    'We want "balance?" What the heck does that mean?'

    It's like diversity. Instead of saying "I hate the majority", they say "we need more diversity/balance".

  • ||

    Reason isn't as editorially mono-think as many other outlets. It encourages and publishes multiple points of view within the highly individualistic and often contrary Libertarian world. This isn't Reason's position. Its the position of a guy who writes for reason. I'm sure a counter-position will also pop up at some point.

  • Tony||

    Do we get to force women to give birth against their will? That's all that matters. For freedom.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    Roe v Wade overturned in 3...2...1...0...-1...-2...-3...-4... how low do negative numbers go?

  • Tony||

    So what the fuck has been the point of all the annoying screeching by religious conservatives my entire life?

  • Just Say'n||

    To allow states to regulate abortions after 24 weeks of pregnancy so the US is more in line with the democratic world rather than having the same abortion laws as China, North Korea, and Vietnam?

  • Tony||

    Because Jesus has a say in American law.... oh wait, He definitely does not, explicitly.

  • Just Say'n||

    Jesus dictated Europe's abortion laws? You've lost the plot, my friend

  • Tony||

    "Hey, at least we're not as bad as [insert country with shitty law]!" is not entirely persuasive to me.

    I particularly enjoy when it's about gay rights and comparing us to Saudi Arabia. "Vote Republican, we prolly won't throw you off a building!"

    Thinking for ourselves, the more you know! Ding!

  • Just Say'n||

    I don't even know what you're saying now, but I think it's fair to say you're not in a good place right now, Tony.

  • ||

    Tony feels very strongly we should strive to be more like Europe, except when he doesn't.

  • TuIpa||

    "Jesus dictated Europe's abortion laws? "

    "I particularly enjoy when it's about gay rights and comparing us to Saudi Arabia"

    Tony, everyone.

  • Gilbert Martin||

    Tell that to all the leftists yapping about "what would Jesus do?" when advocating some socialist government program.

  • Tony||

    Well, conservatards do whore out Jesus for some pretty obviously un-Jesuslike ends.

  • Just Say'n||

    I think you'll find, Tony, that you are as much a religious zealot as Billy Graham. If you thought honestly about it, you'd realize that

  • Tony||

    Really? Which deity do I have blind faith in?

  • Just Say'n||

    The Faith of Progressivism

  • Don't look at me!||

    Anyone with a D after their name.

  • Fancylad||

    Which deity do I have blind faith in?
    The DNC... and probably Media Matters or whoever pays you to post here.

  • Nardz||

    I thought it was 'Jebus'?

  • kevrob||

    I always point out, Josh was supposed to have said, "render unto Caesar..."

    He never said "Be Caesar."

  • Cathy L||

    Tell us what other fundamental rights you think we should put up for a vote so they can be more in line with the democratic world.

    I assume you'll want to start with the first amendment since we're pretty much on our own there by worldwide standards.

  • Just Say'n||

    Does freedom of speech involve virtual infanticide? Or are you referring to another clause that you haven't begun ignoring, since the "free exercise" clause has been abandoned by woketarians

  • Get To Da Chippah||

    Tell us what other fundamental rights you think we should put up for a vote so they can be more in line with the democratic world.

    The right to bear arms!

    Oh, wait, that's your team.

  • chipper me timbers||

    Unless you're consistent on "my body my choice" i tend to dismiss abortion hysterics as partisan.

  • chipper me timbers||

    "Tell us what other fundamental rights you think we should put up for a vote "

    When you call abortion a 'fundamental right' I expect you to apply the principles to the entire human body. If you aren't wholly consistent in your 'my body my choice' stance then I tend to dismiss you as a partisan.

    Are you?

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    So what the fuck has been the point of all the annoying screeching by religious conservatives my entire life?

    In all honesty, Tony, I don't have an answer to that, and boy, they must be disappointed because they've gotten nowhere with it, and Kavanaugh is on record saying it's precedent.

    BTW, it's not just religious conservatives who are doing a lot of "annoying screeching" and I think even you would have to agree with that.

  • Tony||

    They're going to overturn Roe. It's been the entire point of their existence for half a century.

  • Just Say'n||

    At least Tony is more honest about his opposition than some writers at Reason

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    -5... -6... -7...

    This is fun. It's like watching my sister threaten her kids with a countdown.

  • Quo Usque Tandem||

    It is rather like a show of empty threats.

  • Pro Libertate||

    I think the most a conservative court would do is regulate it more at the state level. But the world has changed.

  • Echospinner||

    Never make an empty threat to a three year old. They will outsmart you every time.

  • ||

    You do realize the tulpas and straw men screaming inside your head aren't actual religious conservatives, right?

  • TuIpa||

    I do live in his head.

  • Tony||

    I know, they're just running on inertia. They don't know why they believe things. They just know fat Tucker Carlson tells them to believe it, and they do.

  • kevrob||

    Did Carlson stop wearing bowties because George Will quit the GOP?

  • Dillinger||

    figurative counterbalance to gun control.

  • damikesc||

    Tony, why does allowing states to make the decision on abortion terrify you so?

  • Tony||

    Because theocracy in general is terrifying.

  • damikesc||

    ...yet you buy into global warming.

    And don't see the irony.

    Funny.

  • TuIpa||

    Didn't you repeatedly say you hate women?

    Stop pretending you give a shit about pregnancy you fucking clown.

  • Tony||

    I give a shit about there being fewer children in the world, especially the unwanted kind. Nothing inconsistent about that.

  • TuIpa||

    Stop you fucking liar.

  • Just Say'n||

    At least you admit that you are ignorant enough to still believe that the world is facing an overpopulation crisis, when just the opposite is the case right now

  • Tony||

    No, I just don't like children. And I don't like it when women are forced to give birth to them against their will by government. You know, because I'm a libertarian.

  • TuIpa||

    Oh my god you're such a fraud.

  • Tony||

    I'm more libertarian than you even as I admit to belonging to a political party. You're just a sad pencil-dick shitstain who wants attention because nobody likes you.

  • TuIpa||

    Charlatan.

  • ||

    I just don't like children

    I believe this - it comports well with your generally narcissistic way of processing the world.

    And I don't like it when women are forced to give birth to them against their will by government.

    I don't believe for a second you give two shits about this at all - this is just you virtue signalling to distract from the real reason, which is the first one.

  • Tony||

    Well, I'm not fond of pregnant women either. I have a no fatties rule.

  • ||

    Well, I'm not fond of pregnant women either. I have a no fatties rule.

    So, you agree that your position on abortion has 100% to do with its (rather trivial) impact on you personally and 0% to do with the Social Justice concerns you so loudly bray about caring about?

  • Tony||

    I agree that you work extremely hard to make no effort at all to understand my positions on anything-- which are a fairly mainstream spread of liberal concerns.

  • ||

    I agree that you work extremely hard to make no effort at all to understand my positions on anything

    Hah! Unbeknownst to you, I'm one of the few here who spent years actually trying to understand your positions. Yes, it took me that long to figure out you don't have any.

  • damikesc||

    And I don't like it when women are forced to give birth to them against their will by government.

    You misspelled biology there, son.

    You're aware overturning Roe v Wade won't make abortion illegal, right?

  • Texas Conservative||

    What a shame your mother didn't choose abortion

  • Texas Conservative||

    What a shame your mother did not choose abortion

  • WhatAboutBob||

    Do we get to force women to give birth against their will? That's all that matters. For freedom.

    Actions have consequences, but of course lefties prefer killing others over taking responsibility for their own actions.

  • WhatAboutBob||

    Do we get to force women to give birth against their will? That's all that matters. For freedom.

    Actions have consequences, but lefties prefer killing others than taking responsibility for their own actions.

  • WhatAboutBob||

    Damn squirrels!!

  • buybuydandavis||

    "The Handmaid's Tale is prophecy!"

  • Alcibiades||

    Also Democrats don't give a crap about constitutional values, for them, they're merely barriers to be ignored or smashed to achieve power. Given the chance they would shred the Constitution and toss it in the nearest dumpster.

  • chipper me timbers||

    To be fair, so would every single member of Congress regardless of party, and just about every President since Washington, and their cabinet members.

  • Uncle Jay||

    I don't know about the rest of you good people out there, but I loved the loony left's infantile tantrums during Kavanaugh's nomination process.
    Not even the Marx brothers provided such hilarity.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    And what of Kavanaugh as a jurist? In some ways this question has been overshadowed by the sexual assault allegations, but now that Kavanaugh has a seat on the Court, it returns to the fore.

    So, we did it exactly backwards then. Hooray for us.

  • BestUsedCarSales||

    We resisted. And history will surely judge us kindly for our tenacity. History will judge us well because we dared to care.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    It makes me wonder what it would have been like had the Democrats reversed their strategy. Seriously, think about it. Fight him tooth and nail during the confirmation on sober, constitutional grounds. Then IF he gets confirmed, spring the sexual assault allegations on him and attempt to impeach. THAT would have been a political show-trial I'd pay to see.

  • Just Say'n||

    Imagine if the debate was over Kavanaugh's role in crafting the Patriot Act? That would have been a productive fight.

    But, it's too retro. That's something Democrats circa 2006 would have pursued. Not Democrats circa 2018 with all their "new found respect" for Bush and Bill Kristol.

    God, Democrats circa 2018 suck so hard

  • ThomasD||

    Impeachment, while still ultimately political in nature does carry greater appearances of a trial - meaning there would have had to be more meat on the bones of the accusation.

    It also would have meant they were sure of getting the majorities in Congress.

    They knew they didn't have either, which is why they did not go that route.

  • Sevo||

    "Kavanaugh may have survived this confirmation process, but in the process he may have the left the reputation of the Supreme Court itself more bruised and vulnerable than ever before."

    Gee, a guy who defends his rep against un-proven accusations can cause that?
    Maybe it wasn't him, but the raging victims of TDS who caused those sorts of problems. Maybe you could write an article telling them that, yes, the hag really did lose and Trump is POTUS, and to grow up and get the fuck over it.

  • Quo Usque Tandem||

    The hag herself is clearly not over it. They're going on a speaking tour and the only thing that shuts her up is her coughing fits.

  • Ken Shultz||

    Whatever the negatives of the Kavanaugh confirmation, it also gives us another chance to laugh at progressives while they clutch their pearls, squeal like little girls, run around in circles, and pee their pants--over and over again.

  • Tony||

    The global climate is rapidly becoming inhospitable to human life... and this is what you care about most.

    What sick, sad assholes you are.

  • Just Say'n||

    Kavanaugh getting a seat on the court is literally murdering people.

  • Just Say'n||

    After the tax cuts, people at work literally dropped dead. Literally. After the end of net neutrality, my neighbors house exploded just after it was repealed. And now this morning, just as Kavanaugh was seated on the court my do exploded right in front of me.

    I'm a well adjusted normal person

  • Longtobefree||

    Actually, I looked outside this morning, and there were NOT thousands of women dying in the streets.
    However, they did continue to die in the abortion 'clinics'.

  • Echo Chamber||

    Ouch. Good thing those aren't real women

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    The global climate is rapidly becoming inhospitable to human life... and this is what you care about most.

    Let me know if you need any help moving that goalpost. It looks hella heavy.

  • damikesc||

    It IS getting colder.

    I assumed it was because fall was approaching.

    Nope. Apparently, it's global warming.

  • ThomasD||

    Maybe all that inhospitableness will slow the population growth...

    Which is something of a quandary for all the AGW pimping neo-Malthusians.

  • Microaggressor||

    Could you give me an estimate of how much the population shrank as a result of the climate becoming inhospitable to human life?

  • CE||

    I read yesterday that we're all only going to make 93K instead of 95K someday because of it.

  • ||

    The global climate is rapidly becoming inhospitable to human life

    [citation needed]

  • Tony||

  • ||

    Yeah - I meant some science or something, not a hysterical pre-election screed by WaPo.

    *pats Tony on head*

  • Mr. Dyslexic||

    Have you already started drinking Tony? It's not even 5:00 PM yet.

  • Tony||

    What does 5:00 have to do with drinking?

  • Mr. Dyslexic||

    Don't you have a 9-5 job?

  • Dillinger||

    what does 9-5 job have to do with drinking?

  • ThomasD||

    I have a '9-5' job. It often involves working hours anywhere from 5-9 (including drive time.)

    Which is why I drink.

  • Rock Lobster||

    The left has been inhospitable to human life for a long time, Tony. Over a hundred million people were killed under communist/socialist regimes in the twentieth century. For their own good, of course.

    Today you and your fellow "useful idiots" are tirelessly flogging climate change hysteria as yet another argument for centralized command and control of the economy. Nothing less will save us all from this dire and imminent danger. Lying in pursuit of power is your nature. It is what you do. It is regrettably necessary--for our won good, of course.

    Fuck off and die. You bastards have killed enough people in your idiotic quest for Utopia.

  • Tony||

    Well you're an idiot.

  • ||

    Nevertheless, I'll bet he has a more solid understanding of climate science than you do. Hell, my dog has a better understanding of climate science than you do.

  • Tony||

    Does your dog also get all its science education from Fox News?

  • ||

    You really don't remember that every time you start this with me I mop the floor with you? I was part of the activist crowd that got the climate studies funded in the first place. I've been following the science for thirty years now, the first decade+ of that as a Green Party member.

    Now shut up or put up. Stop calling me names and show me basic scientific literacy rather than just confirming that you're a partisan hack who believes whatever WaPo tells him to believe.

  • Tony||

    I had literally every mainstream news source to choose from. I just picked that one. Would you like another?

  • ||

    I had literally every mainstream news source to choose from. I just picked that one. Would you like another?

    No, I'd like some science you freaking ignoramus.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    The global climate is rapidly becoming inhospitable to human life.

    Science.

    More science.

    And even more science.

    And boom goes the dynamite.

  • JesseAz||

    Tony chooses from news summaries and ignores actual science. Sounds about right.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    What studies do you think you got funded? IPCC (not really a study)? CRU? NOAA? Hansen was off abusing taxpayers 30 years ago at GISS already.

  • Rock Lobster||

    I'm sure you think that Alexandr Solzhenitzen and Dith Pran are idiots, too, Tony.

    Contrary to your ignorant histrionics, the only actual imminent threat to humanity posed by climate change is the chance it might be used as a tool to give people like you a path back to power.

    That would be an extinction level act of stupidity.

  • chipper me timbers||

    ^This exactly

    "oh look things are getting warmer. --mumble mumble --- and we're all gonna die from it! Not time to talk, just give us full authoritarian control of every decision you can possibly make! It's for the children!"

  • Brett Bellmore||

    Whoa, rapidly inhospitable to human life? Tell me, do you ever step outside?

  • JesseAz||

    Hey dumbfuck tony, not even the new ipcc report says that. They even begrudgingly admitted that there is no increase in storms, droughts, hurricanes, etc. The date got pushed from 2022 to 2030, weird how that happens every report, and they spent a while section trying to justify the destruction of capitalism. Meanwhile the temp growth rate continues to be half that of models, remaining within the error bars of temperature estimates pre 1950s.

    You're a dumb fuck who can't take 5 minutes to read what you advocate for. You're just an ignorant zealot repeating the liberal priests lies.

  • Dillinger||

    is fun, yes.

  • Alcibiades||

    That video of them screaming and trying to pry those doors open was...revealing... there's way deeper issues there than Supreme Court picks. Their parents must be so proud.

  • buybuydandavis||

    I love watching hearing them REEEEEE!

  • Dillinger||

    *Everyone's* confirmation to the SC leaves us w/more questions than answers. Every time.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    These questions are more question-ey than previous questions.

  • Don't look at me!||

    I question that.

  • Rock Lobster||

    I find your questioning "question-ey" questionable.

    No question about it.

  • ThomasD||

    I find all these questions highly questionable.

  • Eddy||

  • TuIpa||

    Worry about, or look forward to?

  • Eddy||

    At least when they're passed out, they're not adjudicating.

  • TuIpa||

    More liquor!

  • Eddy||

    More of the brand Thomas drinks.

  • BestUsedCarSales||

    Peeno Noir?

  • Dillinger||

    RBG not 100% sober since 1947

  • Rock Lobster||

    Great article. It was so cool that Ginsberg and Scalia enjoyed a friendship transcending their professional and political differences.

    Maybe Kavanaugh can convince her to give beer a try instead.

  • Longtobefree||

    In other news, RBG did not have a heart attack and die when The Honorable Justice Kavanaugh was sworn in.

  • Weigel's Cock Ring||

    ROFLMAO, that's a good one.

    Given the way she looks these days, I give it 50-50 at best that she's going to make it two more years. And if she's on the unlucky side of that 50-50, the battle to pick her replacement will probably make this one look like nothing.

  • prolefeed||

    She only has to make it a year, maybe a year and a half, before the Biden Rule kicks in.

    I've lost count of how many times I've used to phrase "Biden Rule" with my fiancee to cause a rapid change of subject when she starts bitching about not-SCOTUS Garland again.

  • JesseAz||

    Biden rule is for only when the Senate is opposite party of the presidency.

  • Brett Bellmore||

    The Democrats are currently deliberately misconstruing it, thanks to McConnell's mentioning that he'd have no problem with moving a SC nomination in 2020.

  • ThomasD||

    Have you chosen your divorce lawyer yet?

  • Eddy||

    "Everything which I consider bad is the worst thing in...in...in the whole history of bad things! Until the next thing."

  • DPICM||

    "With Kavanaugh on the bench, it is possible, even probable, that the Supreme Court, like almost everything else in politics today, will become further subsumed by the culture war, transformed into a reality TV spectacle under a reality TV president."

    Too late. SCOTUS has been the left's primary weapon in the culture war for at least the past decade. It's pretty much impossible for it to be further subsumed.

    Also, what is the "instability" here? The only thing that's much different than it has ever been, or was designed to be, was the left's baseless accusation that a justice was a secret gang rapist. But that didn't alter the court's powers, it just made a certain party in Congress look really fucking stupid and evil.

  • buybuydandavis||

    It's only the culture war when the Right does it.

  • Number 2||

    If we are going to have articles on the Supreme Court, can't they please be more like Damon Root's from earlier today?

  • Just Say'n||

    Kavanaugh's nomination battle was a catch-22. If he failed to win confirmation from the Senate then the "sola fide" standards of college kangaroo courts would have been mainstreamed in the US Senate. However, with him gaining confirmation the court has another terrible justice more in the mold of Kennedy than Gorsuch.

    So, congrats, everyone is actually a loser here

  • Zeb||

    Yeah, it's not great and I don't share the glee a lot of people seem to have about his confirmation.

    I think this is the better outcome. Setting the precedent that a single accusation from a long time ago is enough to derail a nomination would be bad. Maybe he did do something bad in high school. We really can't rule that out completely. But I think the chance of having someone like that on the court is better than the alternative which would invite all kinds of wild accusations of future nominees.

  • Echo Chamber||

    Nice concise summary

  • Nardz||

    I dunno.
    I'm not a fan of his. Definitely don't like his background- Ivy League, Gov careerist, born and raised in Montgomery county (I was also born in MC, but got out at 12).
    Yet, I think all of this - ALL of it - might give us a good result.
    I caught a minute or two of his speech last night. While he was talking about the honor and saying all the right words, his face showed a different sentiment- fury.
    I saw a courtroom drawing of the justices hearing a case from today. Aside from RBG, who was striking her typical face-ddown pose (I really don't think she can hold her head up for more than a few seconds at a time anymore), all the other justices had rather neutral expressions - except Kavanaugh, who again looked furious.
    Now, having a "Mad Justice" may strike some as cause for concern. Indeed, it is - for those whom I consider enemies of liberty.
    If his rulings become a way to vengeance, that vendetta will have been declared on the progressives (mostly D, some R), PC culture, and govt institutions themselves.
    He was betrayed by everything his life has always been about just as he reached its pinnacle. Now, having been a target of all the worst political forces, he has the power to damage those same forces.
    A righteously pissed off Kavanaugh might just be a far better jurist for liberty than we dare dream possible, precisely because of the ordeal inflicted upon him.

  • Brett Bellmore||

    Sometimes the only "win" available to you is a lesser defeat. Kavanaugh isn't my favorite nominee, either, but the price of letting the Democrats succeed with this smear was just too high.

    I console myself that he's still going to be a thousand times better on most of the Bill of Rights than anybody Hillary would have plausibly nominated. And we can just hope for better when RBG croaks.

    I'd be hard put to imagine Trump nominating worse than RBG.

    Actually, my expectation is that, when she croaks, the left is going to go so nuts that we'll end up with solid grounds for RICO charges against some of the left's organizations. Kavanaugh was just the warm up for THAT circus!

  • Mickey Rat||

    The fight over Kavanaugh's confirmation shows how bitter the partisan divide already is. But it has more to do with the Left's interest in using the judiciary as an instrument to implement policy rather than following the law, of which Roe v Wade is the quintessential example. We have has the Democrats openly extol the idea that judges should be for the perceived"little guy" rather than who has the strongest case in the law. They have openly called for discarding the idea of presumed innocence and calling for group guilt. They are trying to make the judiciary an openly political branch of government rather than one that at least aspires to dispassionate reason.

  • Microaggressor||

    They have openly called for discarding the idea of presumed innocence and calling for group guilt.

    So you're saying the Soviet Union was ahead of its time.

  • damikesc||

    I'd argue that the Dems never opposed the USSR's policies.

  • Brett Bellmore||

    That's why the original "neo-cons" existed: They were Democrats who fled the party because it didn't take the threat of communism seriously.

    I blame it on the fact that we ended up in an alliance of convenience with Stalin during WWII. WWII forced the right to purge its fascists, but allying with Stalin spared the left the need to purge their equally evil communists. Ever since the Democratic party's unofficial motto has been, "No enemy to the left".

  • Pro Libertate||

    I doubt there's a justice who would ban abortion, anyway. That is all for the leftist masses. Stupid to toss the concept of limited government over something like that in the first place.

  • JesseAz||

    No justic would ban abortion, theyd kick the decision to the states.

  • ThomasD||

    Not so sure about that. If they can ban capital punishment they can surely ban abortion. Not that I'm arguing either are Constitutional, just saying that they've already staked out the necessary territory.

  • CE||

    If you didn't think Supreme Court appointments were already political, you weren't paying attention.

  • Pro Libertate||

    From day 1. And that should be no surprise.

  • Alcibiades||

    I honor of the IPCC report time to fill her up and do some conspicuous consumption.

    That carbon footprint's not gonna enlarge itself.

  • UnrepentantCurmudgeon||

    Wouldn't you know it. Kavanaugh has barely begun to warm his seat and Dems are already talking impeachment. The TDS playbook is in full force and effect. They don't know when they've lost, and they will not stop.

  • Zeb||

    Jesus Christ. Impeachment on what grounds? I would hope the standard for impeachment would be higher than for denying a court nomination. But I suppose when you come down to it, the House could impeach someone because they don't like their haircut if they really wanted to.

  • Zeb||

    And Kavanaugh has a terrible haircut.

  • Pro Libertate||

    He needs a beard.

  • Rock Lobster||

    A Bork beard with no mustache. That would really rub the Democrats nose in it.

  • Brett Bellmore||

    If he really wants to drive Democrats nuts, he should get himself an official Supreme Court beer mug, and have it with him during sessions.

    But I don't think he wants to drive them any more nuts, his family is already getting death threats, and after the last couple of years, you can't just blow it off if a Democrat threatens to kill you.

  • Seamus||

    He's already got Ashley.

    Oh! You meant on his face! That's different. Never mind.

  • Alcibiades||

    Don't knock it, let them impeach away...thanks to the Dems the GOP are gonna increase their Senate majority.

  • Tony||

    Do you think it's appropriate for a Supreme Court justice to openly peddle Clinton conspiracy theories? I bet you do!

  • Zeb||

    No. I think SC justices should shut the fuck up about almost everything in public, outside of the court. But I don't think it's reasonable grounds for impeachment either.

  • Rock Lobster||

    Do you think it's appropriate for a Supreme Court justice to openly denigrate a presidential candidate during an election? I bet you do!

    https://tinyurl.com/zszxhhh

  • Alcibiades||

    I thought this wasn't possible:

    https://www.dailywire.com/news/36917/
    five-teenage-mean-girls-falsely-accused
    -boy-sexual-ashe-schow

  • DRM||

    The left is run entirely by idiots.

    In the small, they demonstrated idiocy by getting rid of the judicial filibuster on the lower courts, then provoking the extension of that precedent by using it against Gorsuch, guaranteeing they couldn't use it against Kavanaugh.

    In the large, they demonstrate that idiocy by trying to delegitimize every bit of the Federal Government -- Presidency (Electoral College!), House (Gerrymandring!), Senate (ND and NY having the same say!), and Supreme Court (Kavanaugh!) -- simply because they've temporarily lost control of it. Because the long-term consequence of successfully delegitimizing all those institutions will be that power falls to the (highly respected, and incidentally right-of-center) military.

    (For another example, look over at "Antifa", which thinks the way to stop an American Hitler is to copy the tactics of the people who failed to stop the original Hitler.)

  • ||

    look over at "Antifa", which thinks the way to stop an American Hitler is to copy the tactics of the people who failed to stop the original Hitler.

    I think you're attributing more thought than is actually there.

  • DRM||

    I should have said "feels" instead of "thinks", since that indeed implies the idiots actually thought about it.

  • Fancylad||

    I'm pretty sure this new "Antifa" are emulating the Brownshirts instead.

  • DRM||

    Nah, they're definitely emulating the failure of the German Communists.

  • Naaman Brown||

    Supposedly AntiFa are emulating the 1920s international communist street gangs who clashed with the national socialist street gangs, the two of them making life in the Weimar Republic a living hell, which resulted in Hitler as Chancellor of Germany in the 1930s.

    I recall a U.S. AntiFa beat an anti-Trump protester with an iron pipe because he was carrying an American flag and refused to surrender it.

    George Orwell an English Socialist went to Spain to fight the Franco faction in the Spanish Civil War. He ended up the target of the pro-Soviet Communists. He was anti-Franco, he was anti-fascist, but it was not enough for the Communists: if you weren't pro Stalin you were the enemy to them.

  • Seamus||

    Supposedly AntiFa are emulating the 1920s international communist street gangs who clashed with the national socialist street gangs, the two of them making life in the Weimar Republic a living hell, which resulted in Hitler as Chancellor of Germany in the 1930s.

    Except they're more like the original AntiFa would have been if, instead of attacking National Socialist street gangs, they attacked Centre Party rallies.

  • ThomasD||

    Except they're more like the original AntiFa would have been, if there had been no National Socialist street gangs, so they instead attacked Centre Party rallies.

  • Brett Bellmore||

    They're like the original Antifa, who weren't fighting Hitler in the name of freedom, but instead because they wanted a communist dictatorship, instead.

    They're not freedom fighters, they're just fighting for a different brand of totalitarianism. Only, without any real Nazis on the other side to fight...

  • Nardz||

    Well said, DRM (and others downthread).
    Progressivism is in the midst of a nervous breakdown, one which started at least a decade ago (though a decade ago is when I first began to understand it).
    The eschatological Apocalypse of John is not a prophecy of the world, but of the psychological course of a belief system. Communist-progressivism is Christian ideology absent its foundation and taken to it's most absurd extreme. Trump is the straw that broke the camel's back.

    Communist-progressivism differs from Fascist-progressivism in ambition. F-p aims to create the higher man, C-p aims to create the higher society. Thus Fascist-progressives emphasize the outliers, while Communist-progressives emphasize the median or mode. Both are inherently consciousness-theological, thus reliant upon central planning.

  • vek||

    "The left is run entirely by idiots."

    Yup.

    I think their problem in recent years is this: The actual crafty and evil politicians who pushed causes simply because it gave them more power almost entirely appealed to feelz. They got votes, and power! Yay! The problem is they created a voter base that is entirely incredibly retarded, easily manipulated, and can't think critically. That voter base has now started following people who THEMSELVES actually believe purely in the feelz, True Believers if you will. These people are now being elected. These people can't think, strategize, or anything else useful, unlike the evil Machiavellian's who started things down this road.

    Therefore the inmates are now running the asylum and the cold calculating Stalin types are now losing control to the rabble from the mob they stirred up.

    This is nothing but AWESOME news for conservatives and libertarians, as idiots are idiots, and easily defeated. They are burning themselves out, and alienating the few sensible people that have still been voting D in recent years. If the Machiavellian's don't regain control soon, the Democratic party is going to flame out HARD in coming years IMO.

  • dwshelf||

    So Suderman disagrees with Kavanaugh on some issues, we presume, and makes the case that disagreement with Suderman is inherently divisive, worrying, and unstable?

    C'mon,man. What kind of argument is that?

    Go ahead and disagree if you disagree, but do so in an intellectual fashion.

  • Derp-o-Matic 6000||

    "Go ahead and disagree if you disagree, but do so in an intellectual fashion."

    LOL. Sorry, you're asking too much from Suderman.

  • Mickey Rat||

    Encapsulation of the #Believe Women philosophy.

  • Sebastian Cremmington||

    These 5 Republican justices will overturn Roe but you can forget them touching gay marriage or Obamacare. Obamacare is stronger than ever thanks to Trump's and Ryan's common sense modifications. These two new justices clerked for Kennedy and will not undermine his legacy with respect to gay marriage.

  • Brett Bellmore||

    "This has energized our base like nothing we've been able"

    No, Mitch, This has energized your base like nothing you've been willing to do.

    There were plenty of things you were *able* to do, that would have energized your base. You were just determined not to do them.

  • Derp-o-Matic 6000||

    Leftists chalk up another political loss, respond by attacking the legitimacy of the system. We see this tired performance again and again.

  • Curly4||

    Kavanaugh's Elevation to the Supreme Court Is a Moment of Worrying Instability . . .

    The only moment of worrying instability wlith Kananaug's elevation is what the left will do next. We have had them going form gun attacks on US congressmen to pestering senators while they are trying to eat at a public restaurant to interrupting senate business to a middle school tweeting "who will take the hit for the team by killing Kavanaugh. It appears that the population has more to fear from the radical left which is almost all the democrats just left of center than it does from from the the alt-right.
    Kavanugh's ruling in his court has been according to the law and constitution and past rulings so there is nothing exciting about those rulings.

  • Reverendcaptain||

    The writer keeps making a fundamental mistake. Kavanaugh did nothing to cause anything here. He was the victim of character assassination by political opponents. Don't do more of the dirty work of those sleazebags.

  • Nardz||

    ^this

  • lap83||

    If your define instability as "not giving into shrieking political zealots" then it's not an institution worth saving

  • buybuydandavis||

    "Don't do more of the dirty work of those sleazebags."

    Suderman is one of the sleazebags.

  • Rev. Arthur L. Kirkland||

    It's enlargement of the Supreme Court, not court packing. Republicans are in no position to object, for several reasons. Republicans could object anyway, of course, so the more important point will be whether they have the power to stop it. Enlarging the Court would be far easier than many people would guess. A majority in the House, a majority in the Senate, a presidential signature, and 'welcome, Justices Obama and Warren.'

    Supreme Court enlargement . . . coming soon to a marble palace near you. Win those elections, conservatives, or get ready.

  • Derp-o-Matic 6000||

    Um, what's to stop the Republicans from doing just that right now?

  • buybuydandavis||

    I think the Republicans should set a mandatory retirement age. At 80. Starting tomorrow.

  • vek||

    Seriously. If the Dems do that next time around... Then the Rs will simply enlarge it again next time they have control. It starts a pointless and stupid downward spiral. Before you know it we'll have more supreme court justices than we have members of congress.

    Of course this could be stopped with a short and simply constitutional amendment that set a fixed number, passed via the method where states ratify it without a convention. I imagine a few sane Dem run states might even get on board, as SOME Dems are grown up enough to see where the downward spiral would lead.

  • Seamus||

    It's enlargement of the Supreme Court, not court packing.

    Enlargement of the Supreme Court is a way to pack the Court. In the paradigm example of court packing, it was how FDR planned to carry it off.i

  • Nardz||

    So Kavanaugh "destabilizes" the court, meanwhile progressives dress up like TV characters, claw at the doors of the SC like mindless zombies, and assault random people who happen to just be driving through Portland. Progressive/D leadership call for exactly this type of behavior (see: Clinton, Waters, Booker, CNN, etc).

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    That's different. They're credible. Respecting societal and institutional norms isn't, unless they conveniently re-align with the desired outcome. The real question is why is there no concern over the reputational damage done by Reason to libertarian values.

  • ThomasD||

    "The real question is why is there no concern over the reputational damage done by Reason to libertarian values."

    You assume anyone else actually reads this claptrap.

  • JesseAz||

    Is Peter paid by the Clintons? This was the same talking point Hillary used today incivility, or instability, is caused by not having to Democrats. They basically admit democrats throw tantrums when they don't get their way but some blame conservatives.

  • buybuydandavis||

    "Kavanaugh's judicial elevation, then, may feel more important than it actually is."

    So myopic. Kavanaugh is 30 years younger than Kennedy.

    Winning.

    "With Kavanaugh on the bench, it is possible, even probable, that the Supreme Court, like almost everything else in politics today, will become further subsumed by the culture war"

    Notice how it's not a culture war when the Left does it. Only when the Right might reverse their judicial authoritarianism.

  • vek||

    "Notice how it's not a culture war when the Left does it. Only when the Right might reverse their judicial authoritarianism."

    And this is way you can tell some idiot has bought into progressive ideology. When it's always ONLY bad when the right gets assertive, you know they've been hoodwinked by the left.

    Things are a war when either side is imposing views on others that they do not believe in. A logical person can then go on to argue why one side might be more correct in their opinion for various logical or moral reasons, but to not consider it a war when one side advances is simply nonsense. It's a war both directions at all times.

  • ThomasD||

    Kind of like Poland's refusal to immediately capitulate forced England to start WWII.

  • ||

    When you engage in scorched earth character assassination and no-holds barred fear mongering when opposing a justices and then lose, whose fault is it that the public questions the character and principles of the judges and the court? This needs to be about education, experience, and historically proven judicial temperament. While RBG has been unseemly in her partisan comments over the past several years (she's old and old people speak their minds), the judges are, by and large, there as judges who are concerned with the rule of law. That's clear from reading transcripts of the arguments. When you politicize the process and turn it into total war you poison the well of trust for the court. That's on the senators, the activists, and the media, not the judges. Kavanaugh is a boring and staid balls and strikes status quo judge whose first question as a Supreme was demanding to know why the court should abandon precedent? He's hardly the bomb chucker. The most offensive thing about him is his obsequious deference to the administrative state (executive power) and poor fourth amendment record. That doesn't mean he's not smart, thorough, or essentially principled. It just means he wouldn't have been my pick.

  • tommhan||

    I only care that he respects and follows our Constitution.

  • swampfaye||

    "and more about altering its status in political life.",,, GOOD!It shouldn't have a political life at all. Now we all see how the DNC plays politics with EVERYTHING. Politics is their religion.

  • vek||

    I can't wait to have the first major decision come down with Kav being the deciding vote where he shoots down some Progressive nonsense... The Liberal Tears will be EPIC!

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    Nothing says instability like calling for to get more aggressive against your opponents. The dems want instability, and then blame the republicans for the instability they help create.

  • Colossal Douchebag||

    Concern troll is concerned. Film at 11.

  • Texas Conservative||

    Kavanaugh did not leave the reputation of the court bruised and vulnerable. The Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee did, and should be censured for it.

  • Greg J||

    1: Suburban moms don't want their sons getting lynched in a kangaroo court

    And they don't want their husbands losing jobs based on the "principle" that "every accused person is guilty"

    Suburban men don't want to lose their jobs, either

    And there's a lot of college educated upper middle class people who can see Kavanaugh in themselves, or their friends.

    Don't be too sanguine about the limited effects of the Democrat lynch mob

    2: Is Roberts going to vote to overturn Roe 5-4? Probably not
    Is Roberts going to take Kennedy's place, voting to strike down State laws imposing "reasonable restrictions" on abortion, like requiring "admitting privileges", or "born alive" laws?

    Don't bet on it

  • Zoidzilla||

    Whilst republicans and democrats like to think that there's a big difference between conservative lawyers and judges and liberal ones, for libertarians there is no dime's worth of difference between them, especially when it comes to the most negative aspects of liberty in our time: the welfare-state, regulated economy way of life and the national-security state apparatus that was grafted onto the U.S. government after World War II, both of which have become permanent features in American life.

  • Zoidzilla||

    U.S. is the biggest free-trade and open-immigration nation in history. Every day, countless people cross state and county borders without any control, regulation, or restriction. No state officials are at state borders to check people's travel papers or to ask about why they are entering. No customs officials or drug-war officials are stationed at state borders to search people and their vehicles for drugs or other contraband. No travel visas are required to go from one state to another. Let's keep it that way.

  • Geek squad||

    Geek Squad is a well-known team for customer support in the USA. If anyone has any problem with them about that product then contact https://geekstechs.org/

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