Tuesday, November 8, 2016

What happens to the Supreme Court after the election?

Some - not all - Republican Senators promise to block all nomination to the court if Clinton wins.

- ScotusBlog offers the following thoughts.

At Reuters, Lawrence Hurley reports that several “intriguing scenarios could unfold after Tuesday’s U.S. election to break the deadlock over filling a Supreme Court vacancy that has provoked a bitter nine-month standoff between President Barack Obama and Senate Republicans.” Burgess Everett reports in Politico that Republican Sen. David Perdue has called “plans for a unilateral blockade” of Supreme Court nominations if Hillary Clinton is elected tomorrow a “’dereliction of duty.’”At Slate, Dahlia Lithwick breaks down the Senate Republicans who have spoken out recently about the possibility of a blockade, into “two distinct teams,” listing the members of what she terms “Team Obstruction” and “Team Responsible Governance,” and hoping that the latter “team wins the day.” At Think Progress, Ian Millhiser contends that a blockade would precipitate a “constitutional crisis.” But in an op-ed in The Hill, Chris Bryant contends that an eight-member court offers advantages, observing that “the Justices are obliged to cooperate and driven to rule on narrow grounds, disposing of the actual cases that come before them while refraining from sweeping pronouncements,” and suggesting that this enforced moderation promises “in turn to diminish, over time, the intense divisiveness currently characterizing Supreme Court nominations.”
In a New York Daily News op-ed, Rick Hasen argues that the election constitutes “an all-out ideological war over the future of the Supreme Court.” Additional commentary on the court and the election comes from the editorial board of The New York Times, which argues that in “the next Congress, regardless of who wins on Tuesday, the very survival of the court as an independent body will be at stake.” More pleas to keep the Supreme Court nomination process free from partisan politics come from the editorial boards of the Chicago Sun-Times and the Boston Globe, and the Walla-Walla Union-Bulletin. In an op-ed for Bloomberg, Jonathan Bernstein argues that if “there’s ever any hope for effective conservative government in the U.S., the first job is to reclaim the Republican Party for conservatives who actually try to do the hard work of governing.”

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