Writing for the Washington Post this Monday, Greg Sargent says that Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s forging ahead with a vote to replace Ruth Bader Ginsburg is more than just “hypocrisy” — it’s a demonstration of “the contempt that McConnell and Trump hold for millions and millions of American voters.”
“It’s about their cavalier willingness to treat all those voters’ political preferences as having no legitimate purchase at all — that is, when they vote for Democrats,” Sargent writes.
According to Sargent, the “real game” was given away by Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN), who declared that the “Constitution gives Senators the power” to confirm nominees, and so “no one should be surprised” if they do it in this case.
“This is true. It’s also true that senators have the power not to confirm nominees,” Sargent writes. “But as a justification for what we’re seeing now, this is deeply disingenuous: In [Merrick Garland’s] case, the Senate didn’t merely not confirm him; they didn’t give him a hearing at all. That excused the Senate from having to make a public choice one way or the other.”
What Alexander means is that the “Senate should only feel obliged to give nominees a hearing in an election year when they are chosen by a president from the same party,” Sargent writes. “The Senate should feel free to deny a hearing to a nominee from the opposite party simply because it can — even though, by the principle conjured up in 2016, this is unfair to the electorate now picking a president.”
“But that’s okay, because this time, that electorate is looking likely to pick a Democratic president.”
Read the full op-ed over at The Washington Post.