Although President Donald Trump isn’t known for reading any more than he absolutely has to, that doesn’t prevent him from railing against books he considers unfavorable to him — for example, Washington Post journalist Ruth Marcus’ newly released “Supreme Ambition: Brett Kavanaugh and the Conservative Takeover.” Trump, on Twitter, has described Marcus’ book as “fake news” and a “badly written and researched disaster.” And according to The Guardian’s Lloyd Green, Trump might grow to hate the book even more if he actually reads it and sees what the two U.S. Supreme Court justices he has nominated so far — Neil Gorsuch in 2017 and Brett Kavanaugh in 2018 — had to say about him behind closed doors.
Green, in a December 1 article for The Guardian, reports that according to Marcus, Kavanaugh — during the 2016 election — asserted that he “thought Trump was a buffoon.” And Gorsuch once told Sen. Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut that he found Trump’s comments about the U.S. judiciary to be “demoralizing” and “disheartening.”
But whatever Kavanaugh and Gorsuch might have had to say about Trump behind closed doors, one of the things evangelicals loves about the president is the fact that he has moved the U.S. Supreme Court to the right on social issues. Trump, with the help of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and a GOP-controlled U.S. Senate, replaced the late Justice Antonin Scalia with Gorsuch — which wasn’t, in and of itself, a game changer. But the big change was replacing the retired Justice Anthony Kennedy with Kavanaugh: while Kennedy was a right-wing libertarian who often sided with Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg on social issues like gay rights, same-sex marriage and abortion, Kavanaugh is more of a social conservative in the Scalia/Justice Clarence Thomas vein.
Green says of Marcus’ book, “Marcus, a veteran Post reporter (and) now deputy editorial page editor, delivers a highly readable 496-page account of Kavanaugh’s nomination, the surrounding machinations within the White House and Congress, and the decades-long campaign waged by the right to wrest control of the judiciary. Although she is unsympathetic to the GOP’s endeavor, her book is amply sourced and footnoted. It is meticulous in detail and credible in content.”
If the U.S. Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade at some point — which is a strong possibility — and legal access to abortion is again determined on a state-by-state basis, it will be a huge victory for the Christian right and Trump’s white evangelical base. But Green notes that pushing the Supreme Court to the right has not only culture war implications, but also, economic implications: Republicans — Marcus demonstrates in her book — are hoping to eradicate what remains of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s New Deal.
“In other words,” Green writes, “fetuses weren’t the only reasons that large checks were being cut to the Federalist Society, or that constitutional originalism had become the civic religion of the right. FDR’s legacy had to be gutted. Social Security may no longer be so secure.”
Even if Trump is voted out of office in 2020 and Democrats retake the Senate, liberals and progressives will still have a lot to complain about in the years to come thanks to Trump’s potentially long-lasting influence on the judiciary. Let’s say that 2020 is a best-case scenario that progressives would love: Sen. Bernie Sanders becomes president, Democrats retake the Senate and expand their House majority — even then, Trump’s effect on the judiciary could be felt for years to come.
“The appointments of Gorsuch and Kavanaugh were not isolated events,” Green explains. “Rather, they marked a culmination of a concerted effort by movement conservatives to remake the courts in their image. While abortion was very much part of their agenda, so was stymying the administrative state and rolling back the New Deal.”
MSNBC’s ‘demotion’ of ‘feckless’ Chuck Todd celebrated: ‘Hurray! More Nicolle, less Chuck’
MSNBC host Chuck Todd was moved to an earlier timeslot where his show, "Meet the Press Daily," will likely earn lower ratings. Meanwhile, Nicolle Wallace seems to have been promoted to a two-hour timeslot leading into primetime.
Wallace, who has extensive experience in Washington, previously served in George W. Bush's White House until abandoning the GOP as the era of Trump came to power.
Todd has made several missteps where he's been unwilling to press GOP leaders who lie openly and obviously on camera.
George Conway blasts ‘blundering cheat’ Trump in new op-ed: ‘His name should live in infamy’
Prominent conservative attorney George T. Conway III has written yet another Washington Post op-ed blasting President Donald Trump.
"If there’s one thing we know about President Trump, it’s that he lies and he cheats. Endlessly," Conway wrote. "And shamelessly. But still, mostly, incompetently."
"So it should have come as no surprise that Trump finally went where no U.S. president had ever gone before. In a tweet last week, he actually suggested that the country 'Delay the Election.' That trial balloon was a brazen effort to see if he can defraud his way into four more years in the White House," he explained. "And why not try? After all, Trump has managed to swindle his way through life, on matters large and small, essential and trivial."
Trump’s ‘delay the election’ tweet laid the groundwork for him and his followers to have an excuse if he loses
Writing in The New York Times this Monday, Gail Collins and Bret Stephens discuss their contention that President Trump is seeing the writing on the wall regarding the 2020 election, an analysis born from his recent tweet where he suggests delaying the election.
According to Stephens, Trump's tweet is a sign that he knows "in his heart" that he's going to lose in November.
"He’s laying the groundwork not for a coup but for an excuse, both for himself and for his followers," Stephens says. "It creates a mythology to explain defeat, attack Joe Biden and keep the Trump family relevant in the Republican Party. The fact that he’d pull a stunt like this is another reason it’s so important that he lose in a landslide in November."