Gentlemen and ladies, we the people of the United States know what you think of our President. You don’t say it openly but you think he is an illegitimate executive and has no right to nominate a justice for consideration for nomination to the Supreme Court during his final year in office. As stupid as this is, if he had not nominated someone, you would probably be criticizing him for dereliction of duty. President Obama did, in fact, nominate judge Merrick Garland on March 16 of this year to replace Antonin Scalia who died unexpectedly in February. Judge Garland has been under consideration twice before for the highest court in the land and has been called by senior Republicans in the senate, “a consensus nominee” and a fine man. Judge Garland has more federal judicial experience than any nominee in history but the US Senate, on principle, will not act on his nomination. They are content to let the next President choose a nominee. At least that is what they have stated publicly.
If the Senate will not act on the current SCOTUS vacancy, so be it. As things are looking at present, Senate republicans are about to experience their worst nightmare. Baring a miracle, it appears that Hillary Clinton will become the 45th President of the United States and it is highly probable that the democrats will gain control of the Senate. If that is the fact, as a liberal democrat, I am glad you did not act on Judge Garland’s nomination. Madame President is free to nominate someone with far more liberal tendencies than Judge Garland and someone younger as well, and Senate republicans will be powerless to stop it. Hillary Clinton will have the ability to shift the balance of power on the Supreme Court for many years to come and instead of prudently approving a centrist to the court, you might get what you deserve.
Here are a few names for you to ponder as possible replacements for Judge Garland: Pamela S. Karlan, a leading liberal scholar on issues like voting rights and the political process. Nina Pillard, currently a circuit judge on the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia who has been called one of the most liberal judges appointed to the federal bench in generations. Jennifer Granholm, the former Governor of Michigan who has long been considered a potential nominee for the Supreme Court and a vocal proponent of both President Obama and Secretary Clinton. Elizabeth Warren, a close friend of Ms. Clinton and currently a US Senator from Massachusetts holding the seat once held by Ted Kennedy. Ms. Warren is one of the de facto leader of the Progressive movement and there would be no better way to placate the Bernie Sanders supporters than to nominate Warren to the Supreme Court. And finally, give Senate republicans what they really deserve, Barrack Obama, as the next member of the US Supreme Court. POTUS to SCOTUS is not unprecedented and would certainly alienate the political right wing of this country, probably forever.