A screenwriter couldn’t have written a scenario that more perfectly defined hypocrisy and shamelessness: As quickly as Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said hell no to replacing Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia after his death, 269 days before the November 2016 election, while muttering a made-up principle about replacing members of the court in election years, McConnell is saying hell yes to replacing Ruth Bader Ginsburg after her death, 46 days before the November 2020 election.
“President Trump’s nominee will receive a vote on the floor of the United States Senate,” he promises, while Trump calls for “confirmation without delay.”
Such a corrupt act happening on McConnell and Trump’s watch is unsurprising. What will be genuinely shocking is if McConnell’s fellow Republicans go along with a rank power grab so disgusting it boggles the mind and sickens the stomach.
Americans may be increasingly tribal, but they are not so stupid to swallow this tripe. Senate Republicans may be loath to stand up to Trump, but they can’t dare let themselves become accessories to a brazen daylight robbery.
Indeed, the GOP’s hold on the body is even less firm now than it was then. In 2016, the Senate had 54 Republicans; this year, it has 53 Republicans.
It only takes three Republican senators with ethical bones in their body to reject McConnell’s madness. A Senate that four years ago refused to give a hearing to Merrick Garland, and that now seriously entertains seating Ginsburg’s replacement, would be a Senate without a single remaining iota of legitimacy.
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