This is the story of three missiles. One missile is surrounded by 58 other Tomahawk missiles that struck at Syria. Another missile is the heat seeking missile Obama Dimocrats fired at President Trump. This second missile has gone rogue, changed target, and instead of chasing President Trump is now fixed upon Barack Obama’s leading-from-his-behind ass and about to penetrate that well used tunnel.
The third missile? Gorsuch. Neil Gorsuch. Associate Justice to the Supreme Court Neil Gorsuch. That’s the missile with the biggest payload. This multiple warhead missile will keep destroying its targets for twenty, thirty, or forty years.
As we do, President Donald J. Trump expects to appoint more missiles to the high court. As we do, President Donald J. Trump believes there will be four more:
President Trump believes that he will have the opportunity to pack the Supreme Court with five judges, making him only the seventh president to appoint a majority and potentially cementing his legacy and that of the conservative court well past 2055.
Today the Scalia replacement. Probably in June the Anthony Kennedy replacement. The relatively young Clarence Thomas at 71 will resign too and President Trump will appoint a much younger version.
We suspect Stephen Breyer will recognize the ceaseless 5-4 victories will not validate his continued presence away from retirement. After that, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, will succumb to a life away from the court too.
At today’s ceremony at the White House, President Trump slathered Justice Anthony Kennedy with so much praise it reminded us of that line from The Women. As chimes play in “Black’s Fifth Avenue” department store one woman asks “What’s that?” The other woman responds “The bums rush in melody dear.”
Do you hear those chimes sing Justice Anthony Kennedy?
President Donald J. Trump is ready for the Kennedy retirement. Politico has the details:
After Donald Trump wrapped up his first speech to Congress and worked his way through the crowd, he lingered on his handshake with Anthony Kennedy, the 80-year-old Supreme Court justice.
The boom mics picked up their seemingly private conversation.
“Say hello to your boy,” Trump said, “Special guy.” “Your kids have been very nice to him,” Kennedy replied. “Well,” Trump said, “they love him, and they love him in New York.”
While the White House is focused this week on shepherding Trump’s first Supreme Court nominee, Neil Gorsuch, through the Senate confirmation process, the president and his team are obsessed with the next possible vacancy. [snip]
One back channel is the fact that Kennedy’s son, Justin, knows Donald Trump Jr. through New York real estate circles. Another is through Kennedy’s other son, Gregory, and Trump’s Silicon Valley adviser Peter Thiel. They went to Stanford Law School together and served as president of the Federalist Society in back-to-back years, according to school records. More recently, Kennedy’s firm, Disruptive Technology Advisers, has worked with Thiel’s company Palantir Technologies.
In fact, during the early months of the Trump administration, Gregory Kennedy has worked at NASA as a senior financial adviser as part of the so-called “beachhead” team. Both Kennedy boys were spotted at the White House last month for the administration’s St. Patrick’s Day celebration (Justice Kennedy is Irish Catholic). In February, Ivanka Trump attended oral arguments of the Supreme Court with her daughter. She was a guest of Justice Kennedy. [snip]
Those close to Trump’s judicial-selection process stress that they’re not pressuring Kennedy to hang up his robe, only seeking to put him at ease.
Um, “only seeking to put him at ease” is the bum’s rush in melody dear. Those lines of communication from the Trump family and allies should have Chuck Stumbler and his Obama Dimocrats worried sick.
That list of of potential Supreme Court appointments? That’s also a list of potential President Trump appointments to the Appellate Circuit. Many of those soon to be announced appointments are undergoing F.B.I. background checks. Neil Gorsuch is not the sole move on the judicial chessboard by President Trump. And, after Neil Gorsuch, it all becomes easier for President Trump which is why we understood the Obama Dimocrats would filibuster – even though that was a suicide move.
Democrats have zero leverage after Gorsuch [snip]
The exercise of the “nuclear option” returns Senate procedures to what they were 15 years ago. The filibuster was simply not employed for partisan purposes against a nominee who had majority support before Harry Reid started filibustering George W. Bush’s lower-court nominees in 2003. (Infamously, the Senate denied Miguel Estrada an up-or-down vote seven times to prevent Bush from later having the opportunity to elevate the first Hispanic justice.) Reid used the “nuclear option” to eliminate that sort of filibuster a decade later, so perhaps this week’s action should be called “thermonuclear.” [snip]
The next nominee. By filibustering the milquetoast Gorsuch despite the high probability and repeatedly expressed intention of the Republicans to go nuclear, the Democrats have destroyed any leverage they had over the next nominee. Should there be another vacancy under President Trump while the GOP controls the Senate, there will be zero incentive for the President to moderate his choice. It’s not at all clear that Republican senators such as Susan Collins of Maine, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, Lindsey Graham of South Carolina and other “institutionalists” would’ve gone along with a “nuclear option” to replace Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg with a nominee more controversial than Gorsuch. But now they won’t face that dilemma.
Until President Donald J. Trump, Republicans have faced an ugly dilemma with appointments to the Supreme Court:
Whoever said you can’t win by picking unwinnable battles never said it to Chuck Schumer. Democrats opted to fight the good fight, which tends to undermine future attempts to fight the winning fight. This represents a role-reversal of sorts for Democrats and Republicans. Until recently, conservative legislators played Charlie Brown kicking the football to the role of Lucy pulling it away played by Republican presidents, whose stealth nominees invariably revealed themselves as liberals once on the court.
Democrats nominated just eight of the last 25 justices to the Supreme Court. But because Republican presidents nominated the likes of Earl Warren, William Brennan, Harry Blackmun, John Paul Stevens, and David Souter, liberal majorities ruled the Supreme Court throughout the lifetimes of just about everybody reading this. The phenomenon, captured in the title of Patrick Buchanan’s 1975 book Conservative Votes, Liberal Victories, effectively meant a veto on conservative laws, particularly ones passed at the state level. Jurists nominated by Republicans authored the decisions in Roe v. Wade, Kelo v. New London, National Federation of Independent Businesses v. Sebelius, and so many lesser-known cases whose decisions usurped the rights of states and individuals.
John Stuart Mill didn’t call conservatives “the stupid party” for nothing. But even slow people figure it out, albeit, as their name suggests, more slowly, and conservatives blocked George W. Bush’s suspected stealth pick Harriet Miers and stood firmly in blocking a vote on Barack Obama’s nomination of Merrick Garland. [snip]
The payoff for McConnell’s gambit on Garland appears especially generous given the widespread declarations that replacing Antonin Scalia with a consistent liberal vote represented a historic sea change. “The Supreme Court’s Conservative Run Is Over” (Politico), “The Conservative Era of the Supreme Court Is Over” (Los Angeles Times), and “After 45 Years of Conservative Rulings, Here’s What a Liberal Supreme Court Would Do” (Washington Post) read a few of the headlines. What a difference a year makes!
The confirmation of Neil Gorsuch via the destruction of the filibuster is a major immediate and long term victory for President Trump. “Democrats nominated just eight of the last 25 justices to the Supreme Court.” But because of obstruction, their nominees were not ideologically committed and soon moved to the left. From now on that won’t happen. And if President Trump appoints 5 young Justices to the high court, the likelihood that Obama Dimocrats will appoint even a single Supreme Court Justice in the next 25 years is de minimus. Thank Barack Obama and the Mistake in ’08.
On April 17, the Supreme Court returns to work and the influence of Justice Gorsuch will be felt on the calendar of the court. And this schedule does not include, yet, President Trump’s “nexus issue” -immigration – on which Justice Gorsuch will have a profound effect.
This Holy Week, with Passover holidays under threat and the slaughter in Egypt of Christians on Palm Sunday and throughout the middle east in our minds, should remind us all that President Trump is on the job and as bad as things are the Republic is in good hands. As busy making America Great Again as he is, President Trump has proven he can play a winning game of chess on multiple boards.
Chess GrandMaster Trump? Even the Trump hating Washington Post is forced to agree with our analysis:
Could it be? Is President Trump on a roll?
I don’t want to jinx anything, but President Trump may be experiencing the best sequence of events since he became president. Just this week, he received bipartisan support for his military strike in Syria, secured Judge Neil Gorsuch’s Senate confirmation to the Supreme Court, had impressive meetings with both King Abdullah II of Jordan and President Abdel Fatah al-Sissi of Egypt, caught a break with the Susan Rice scandal, and it appears he has walked away from a successful encounter with Chinese President Xi Jinping — all without knocking it off the rails with a wayward tweet. And it’s not just me saying that, no less than Council on Foreign Relations President Richard Haass wrote that this was “arguably [the] best of Donald Trump’s still young presidency, from [a] successful strike in Syria to confirmation of his Supreme Court nominee.” [snip]
McConnell was correct in saying, “Certainly, this is an important day in the history of the Senate and in the Supreme Court.” And if Gorsuch’s confirmation is the only legacy Trump walks away from office with, it will be a great one.
In politics, just like in golf, luck counts. The fact that Trump launched an attack against Syria while his Chinese counterpart was present and able to witness the aftermath in the media was a powerful stroke of good luck for the White House. In case Xi needed any reminding of just how serious Trump may be about taking action in North Korea, the Syria attack couldn’t have been a better example or come at a better time. By all accounts, expectations for their meeting were low. But reports indicate that Trump and Xi had substantive, mostly positive conversations, perhaps leaving the Chinese president with a lot to think about. [snip]
But Trump’s luck didn’t end there. He caught another break with the Rice scandal being revealed when it was. The story has legs, and it’s become a counterweight to the media’s appetite for a Trump-Russia connection. The unmasking fiasco is distracting from the circus show that is the House Intelligence Committee’s investigation, but it won’t peak until Rice testifies under oath. And at that point, who knows which direction the investigation will take? For now, the intensity of the media’s search for a silver bullet in the faux Trump-Russia connection has subsided.
Um, it wasn’t “luck”. President Trump knows who did what to whom on the Rice story. What is happening now is a theatrical lifting of the curtain and a spot light hitting the culprits. President Trump made his own “luck” on Susan Rice.
President Trump also prepared for “luck” on the meeting with President Xi by hiring some tough hombres who have studied China trade policies for a long time. President Trump also sent top emissaries such as Secretary of State Tillerson to South Korea in previous weeks to pave the way for action on North Korea. As President Xi had his entrée served, President Trump knew what was about to happen in Syria. President Trump knew that the main course at dinner was a lesson to President Xi on what to do about North Korea.
North Korea itself was on the menu.
Barack Obama, Chuck Schumer, and Obama Dimocrats, are about to get a fork stuck in them too.