Andrew Jackson made no bones about it. "To the victor belong the spoils!" Frankly, it was considered crass and vulgar at the time and it's still regarded with a certain amount of disgust and revulsion in these more genteel times. But the simple reality is that this observation was true in Old Andy's time and it's still true today.
I mention this in light of President Trump's nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to be the next Justice of the Supreme Court. The fact is that after the requisite display of disdain and disapproval by Senate Democrats, in the end, Brett Kavanaugh will take his seat on the Supreme Court. This really has nothing to do with Judge Kavanaugh's qualifications, legal or otherwise. It has nothing to do with Judge Kavanaugh's position on Roe v. Wade or the Affordable Care Act. Ultimately doesn't matter that Judge Kavanaugh blindly supports the economic interests of the one percent against the rest of us ninety-nine percenters. When you come right down to it, the only salient fact is that the Republicans have the votes in the Senate to confirm and there is nothing that the Democrats can do about it. When you get right down to it, it's about twenty months too late for the Democrats to do anything about the Supreme Court or any other federal court for that matter. Elections have consequences.
Don't get me wrong. I'm sure there will be any number of protests and demonstrations staged by the Political Left against the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court. There will be millions of dollars raised to fund television ads to oppose the Kavanaugh nomination. All that organizing, all that energy, all that fulmination, all for naught ultimately. Why for naught? Because even if this monumental effort turns out to be successful and Brett Kavanaugh is denied the opportunity to serve on the Supreme Court, Democrats will still have to ask this pertinent question. If not Kavanaugh, then who? Lest we forget, Donald Trump will still be President the day AFTER Brett Kavanaugh's nomination is rejected, which means that he will still get to pick next justice of the Supreme Court.
The fact is that any battle over the Supreme Court in 2018 represents a distraction and Democrats can't afford to be distracted. Democrats have to keep their eyes on the prize and the prize this year is the mid-term elections. Diverting precious time, effort, energy and finances from the mid-term elections to fight an ultimately unsuccessful battle over the Supreme Court would be the most disastrous political decision the Democrats can make. Democrats have the opportunity to take the House of Representatives this November. They even have an outside chance of flipping the Senate their way. But it won't happen if they draw their attention away from the mid-terms and to the Brett Kavanaugh nomination.
Karl Rove, of sainted memory, was at his best as a political consultant when he made decisions based purely on the numbers. He did not allow emotion or sentiment to enter into the equation. Now is the time for the Democrats to be a little Rovian. Yes, Roe v. Wade may be in danger, the Affordable Care Act may be at risk through judicial fiat, important civil rights legislation can be watered down or overturned. And from my perspective these are bad things. But now is the time for Democrats to be realistic. The Supreme Court, for all intents and purposes, is lost. Now is the time for strategic retreat. Abandon the fight over the Kavanaugh nomination and fight furiously to win the mid-term elections.
I suggest Democrats consider Ruth Bader Ginsburg. She's 85 years old. She's managed to survive two bouts with cancer. There is no guarantee that she will survive until January 20, 2021 and there's no guarantee that a Democrat will be sworn in as President on that day. But if you Democrats take the Senate this year, you can effectively block any future Trump Supreme Court appointments. If you don't, however, and Justice Ginsburg for some reason is forced to leave the Court, President Trump will see to it that the Supreme Court remains a conservative bastion for thirty years or more. The choice is yours Democrats, don't blow it like you did the 2016 elections!
Filed under: Politics