'Illegitimate’: Morning Joe unloads on Supreme Court taking away rights after being appointed by unpopular presidents

MSNBC's Joe Scarborough condemned the U.S. Supreme Court as illegitimate after a leaked draft shows a majority is prepared to strike down the longstanding Roe v. Wade ruling.

The landmark abortion rights case has long been a subject of conservative ire, but each of the five justices who would be voting with the majority had assured the Senate Judiciary Committee they considered Roe to be settled law before their confirmation, and the "Morning Joe" host said the pending ruling would undermine the court's authority.

"Well, I mean, for the Supreme Court, in a word, illegitimacy," Scarborough said. "You know, the court has always been guided by the law, but it's also been keenly aware that it is the only unelected branch of American government. They needed to not appear to be openly contemptuous of public opinion. That would be especially true today, given the GOP's might-makes-right approach to the sacking of Merrick Garland's nomination or the elevation of Donald Trump's final pick."

Scarborough pointed out that four of the five justices voting with the majority had been appointed by presidents who had lost the popular vote, including one who was nominated by Trump after then-Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell refused to hold hearings for Barack Obama's last choice for nearly a year.

"Look at this picture from Madeleine Albright's funeral," Scarborough said, showing a photo of President Joe Biden sitting alongside Barack Obama, Bill Clinton, Hillary Clinton and Al Gore. "The five Democratic politicians on the front row won the most votes in the presidential elections of 1992, 1996, 2000, 2008, 2012, 2016 and 2020. Yet, a half century of constitutional rights supported by over 70 percent of Americans -- let me underline that again. People lying to you on other channels will never say this, over 70 percent of Americans support that constitutional right. It'll be swept away by the presidents not in this picture and the presidents who were outvoted in each one of those elections over the last three decades."

"Now Americans will rightly conclude that their voices and their votes no longer matter," he added. "So what are the implications for the court, for the law and for American democracy?"

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