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[Opinion] Rush Limbaugh reminds us that for liberals history begins today.  This allows Democrat Party leadership, the legacy media, and social media to reset every political argument to fit the moment.

Case in point, the ridiculous narrative that deceased Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s dying wish somehow justifies allowing her to judge from beyond the grave.  Or, to at least keep the seat she occupied open until her preferred president is in place.

In a statement reportedly made to her granddaughter Clara Spera, Ginsburg is purported to have said, “My most fervent wish is that I will not be replaced until a new President is installed.”

That may or may not have been her wish, we have only her granddaughter’s word for it, but Justice Ginsburg became an acclaimed jurist because she judged cases on their merits.  The wishes of an individual does not drive public policy.

On this front, Justice Ginsburg made her responsibility clear after her colleague Justice Antonin Scalia’s sudden passing had created a vacancy on the high court in 2016, in another election year…

Then-President Barack Obama advanced the name of Merrick Garland to fill the seat

(The New York Times) Asked if the Senate had an obligation to assess Judge Garland’s qualifications, her answer was immediate.

“That’s their job,” she said. “There’s nothing in the Constitution that says the president stops being president in his last year.”

Ginsburg was right when she said that “There’s nothing in the Constitution that says the president stops being president in his last year.”

But for a member of the high court that emphasizes precedent to guide their rulings, Ginsburg ignored the well-established historical precedent associated with late-term Supreme Court nominations.

All rhetoric aside, in 2016 McConnell reminded us of the historical record…

“You’d have to go back to 1888 when Grover Cleveland was in the WH to find the last time a vacancy created in a presidential year was confirmed by the party opposite the occupant of the WH. So this vacancy will not be filled this year.”

McConnell recalled that historical fact again just prior to the 2018 midterm elections after Democrats savagely attacked Brett Kavanaugh with multiple false allegations…

(National Review) The Washington Post joins a host of media outlets this morning in contending that Mitch McConnell has “reversed” his position on considering Supreme Court appointments in presidential election years. McConnell said last night that he would “fill” any Supreme Court vacancy that arose next year. This, apparently, is “hypocritical” given his refusal to acquiesce to the nomination of Merrick Garland back in 2016.

Trouble is, McConnell has not actually reversed his position, which was not that Supreme Court vacancies should always be left open in presidential election years, but that vacancies should be left open in presidential election years when the president is of a different party than the majority in the Senate. McConnell also argued that his position was justified because Obama was a “lame duck.”

(Yahoo News) Twenty-nine times in American history there has been an open Supreme Court vacancy in a presidential election year…

… In short: There have been ten vacancies resulting in a presidential election-year or post-election nomination when the president and Senate were from opposite parties… Only one of those, Chief Justice Melville Fuller’s nomination by Grover Cleveland in 1888, was confirmed before the election… 

… The norm in these cases strongly favored holding the seat open for the conflict between the two branches to be resolved by the presidential election. That is what Republicans did in 2016. The voters had created divided government, and the Senate was within its historical rights to insist on an intervening election to decide the power struggle. Had there been no conflict between the branches to submit to the voters for resolution, there would have been no reason for delay…

So what does history say about this situation, where a president is in his last year in office, his party controls the Senate, and the branches are not in conflict? Once again, historical practice and tradition provides a clear and definitive answer: In the absence of divided government, election-year nominees get confirmed.

Just imagine the collective hiss that will be heard around the globe when the media has no choice but to announce POTUS the winner … again

Mark Sidney

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