Thoughts about the Supreme Court

Rather recently, as I recall, in the 1990s, we had a conservative court, which outrageously overstepped its bounds in throwing the 2000 election to Bush. (O’Connor was considered a moderate conservative, but she went along with the majority.)  Obama played by the rules, but Trump / McConnell, abetted by the Republican-controlled senate, elected not to. Refusing to even hold hearings on Obama’s nominee, Merrick Garland, was a rank affront to the Constitution.

A major event of this century has been the accelerating corruption and fecklessness of the Republican Party and its contempt for the Constitution, the rule of law, civic responsibility, and decency. Their tolerance for the sociopath in the White House is appalling and indefensible. Their acquiescence to his stuffing the Federal courts with ideological allies, limited to those certified by the right-wing Federalist Society, many of them rated unqualified by the A.B.A., is contemptible. Typical of Republican malfeasance and nonfeasance was the faux F.B.I. investigation of Brett Kavanaugh and the refusal of  Republican senators to give serious consideration to the facts and conduct a trial after Trump’s impeachment.

The present Court has inflicted great damage on our democracy, most conspicuously, as far as I know, with the Citizens United case, the evisceration of the Voting Rights Act, and throwing up their hands at brazenly partisan gerrymandering. Moreover, the Court has ignored that the Constitution guarantees not only freedom of religion, but freedom from religion.  Roe v. Wade has been dragged closer to the guillotine.

On the Court today, Thomas, Alito, Gorsuch, and Kavanaugh are all authoritarian-minded religious nationalists, and Roberts is not far removed from them in his views. Now, Republicans are about to seal long-term control of the Court by adding another one.