The Barrett Hearing — Questions and Answers

I will be doing a running commentary today on the confirmation hearing of Judge Amy Coney Barrett for the Supreme Court of the United States.

The hearing began with a bang with one of the most unadorned and unambiguous statements in favor of originalism by a modern Supreme Court nominee.  Judge Barrett declared that the meaning of the language does not change with time.

I was also struck by Barrett’s reference to “super precedent” as a concept raised by others. That was discussed in my column yesterday.

9:24 – Barrett just said that even if a case was wrongly decided, a justice must look at “reliance” on that decision before overturning the case.  She confirmed that the issue is not solely whether the precedent was based on a flawed interpretation.

9:25 – Barrett was just asked about recusal from the ACA case. She correctly noted that the case is on the narrow issue of severability. She said she would look at Section 455 and she declined to answer the question citing Ginsburg.  There is no reason for her to recuse herself in my view.

9:32 – Feinstein went straight to abortion. She noted that Ginsburg stated that in her confirmation hearing that the Constitution supports abortion. That is a good set up for the question since it negates the impact of the “Ginsburg Rule.”  Feinstein references Casey and Scalia’s dissent that Roe should be overruled.  Barrett pivoted nicely by citing Kagan rather than Ginsburg. .Kagan refused to answer the same question saying that she would not give “a thumbs up or thumbs down” on abortion questions. The Democrats supported her in refusing to answer the questions.

9:44 – Feinstein has returned to the ACA stories of those impacted by health costs. It is another deeply troubling account and an excellent example of the need for national health care. However, as I have previously stated, this is unfair to Barrett. These are not her victims and she is not supposed to decide cases based on her support for an underlying policy. Barrett correctly answered that such cases most be reviewed on the basis for the law and not these policies. Policies are for Congress.  Yet, Feinstein just said her vote would turn on whether she thought Barrett would vote against the ACA.

Voting on a confirmation based on the expectation of a nominee’s vote on a pending case is deeply troubling.

9:49 — Barrett is again trying to explain that the issue in California v. Texas is not an overarching review of the ACA but a narrow issue of severability — an issue that she has not previously addressed.

9:50 — Feinstein is now asking for an opinion on a possible challenge to Trump on interfering with the election. Barrett clearly noted that “we don’t want judges to be legal pundits.” It is a wildly inappropriate question for a nominee before or after the Ginsburg Rule.

9:55 — Feinstein is simply going through a litany of hypotheticals designed to get Barrett to refuse to answer as did Kagan and other nominees before her.  This seems an attempt to increase the number of the “she refused to answer” examples.  However, her position is the same that justices like Kagan who were supported by Feinstein in refusing to answer.

10:08 — Grassley just asked about legislative history.  Barrett expressed a willingness to consider such evidence but that the text must control.  Barrett reaffirmed Scalia’s concern about turning to legislative history when the text is clear. She said “as a general rule” she does not look at legislative history but does not rule it out. The indication is that Barrett is at best leery of the use of legislative history like her mentor.

10:17 — Grassley is repeating the Ginsburg rule against giving hints or forecasts on pending or future cases.  It does reveal the difficulty for Democrats in seeking to Barrett to contradict the rule most associated with Ginsburg. Barrett said that she agrees with the Ginsburg rule as something that “reinforces judicial independence.”  Barrett also repeated that no one has asked her before her confirmation about his view on any case.

10:22 — Leahy is again returning to the ACA about the millions covered by the Act. Again, if it were 2 or 2 million or 22 million, it would not have bearing on the narrow legal question of severability involved in California v. Texas.

10:25 — Leahy is continuing to question Barrett on the cost of insulin. A rather bizarre line of questioning. He added “I would not expect you to.” Precisely. She is not the nominee for the Secretary of Health and Human Services.

10:30 — This is getting a bit bizarre as Barrett is asked if she knows a variety of political facts that have no relevance or bearing on her confirmation. Her substantive role in such questioning is about as substantive as the ficus plant in the corner of the Committee room.

10:32 — Leahy just again asked her to recuse herself despite the the lack of any basis for such recusal.  There is no conflict of interest in Barrett sitting on such a case. Indeed, we should want a full court to decide such a challenge rather than risk a tie.

10:44 — Leahy just brought up the Box case in 2018 and Barrett’s dissent.  However, it is notably that the Supreme Court supported her view and reversed on that issue.

10:47 — Leahy just raised her signing the statement on abortion.  She said that she signed it on her way out of church. The statement reaffirmed her moral opposition to the abortion. However, she insisted that her personal views have no bearing on how she would rule as a jurist.

10:50 — Leahy just asked about the Blackstone group and tried to tie her to the views of the groups.  However, she simply spoke to the group and noted that she had no idea of literature from the group on issues like same-sex marriage. Barrett then invoked Kagan again on the issue of stating her position on same-sex marriage.

10:57 — In responding to Sen. Cornyn, Barrett again rejected the notion that policy weighs into a jurist’s decision.

11:03 — Barrett was just asked about the establishment clause by Cornyn. She gave a basic balancing response between free exercise and establishment values.

11:05 — Durbin just expressed confusion on “where does this notion that you would violate your oath come from?” He insisted that Trump is to blame. He might however want to remove the giant posters showing people relying on the ACA and the statement of his colleagues like Booker that they will vote against her because of her expected vote against the ACA. Durbin then incongruously launched back into the ACA.

11:12 — Barrett just said that watching the George Floyd video had a huge impact on her as the mother to two black children. She said that she wept with her children in watching the video.

11:16 — Durbin is raising the Kanter case in 2019 on the Second Amendment. He is slamming Barrett for her dissent. Kanter was convicted of selling fraudulent shoe inserts. He was not a violent offender. Barrett questioned the basis of taking away his Second Amendment rights without showing a violent risk. This was the most substantive exchange yet. Notably, Barrett cited her originalist view of the amendment.

11:21 — Durbin is describing violence in Chicago and labeling Barrett as fostering the violence.  Barrett noted that nothing she said in the case would prevent a state from taking away guns if there was a showing of dangerousness.

11:25 — Had another good answer in pointing out the wide array of crimes considered felonies that would could be used as a categorical exclusion from the 2nd Amendment right.

11:27 — Interesting discussion of the comparison of depriving the right to vote as opposed to gun possession based on a felony.  Barrett tried to explain that it turns on different language in the respective constitutional provisions.  Nevertheless, Durbin’s questioning on this point was effective, even if it ignored the legal distinctions drawn by Barrett.

11:31 — Durbin just hit Barrett over dark money allowed by Citizen’s United to support her nomination. He of course did not mention the huge amount of such money used to oppose her nomination.

What is most striking is the attack of Democrats on a jurist who insisted that individual ex-felons deserve some pre-deprivation review or showing before losing a constitutional right as in the Kanter case.. Durbin’s dismissive comments on “Ricky” suggests that, as a former felon, he can be categorically excluded from certain constitutional rights.

11:34 — Sen. Lee is hitting his colleagues on pushing Barrett to confirm her position on cases like the ACA. Lee just quoted Ginsburg at length in refusing such answers.

I have to run to do some on-air coverage.

12:47 — I’m back

12:48 — Whitehouse is back to the theme that he raised with Kavanaugh discussing “outside forces” and Citizen’s United.  He again is omitting the dark money and outside forces spending wildly to be opposing this nomination.

12:50 — Whitehouse is stressing that the Republicans promised to pick judges who would oppose Roe or the ACA. However, the Democratic presidential candidates pledged to pick only nominees committed to preserving Roe and other values. Again, one pledge is anathema while the other is aspirational.

12:54 — Whitehouse is attacking the commitment to picking pro-life justices but Democrats insisted on picking only pro-choose nominees. Nevertheless, Whitehouse and others supported Kagan and Sotomayor refusing to answer these questions.

12:56 — Whitehouse is omitting groups like Fix Our Senate which are spending considerable amounts to oppose this confirmation. [Note: just a correction. I was discussing groups on both sides of the Barrett nomination and I mistakingly included the Article III Project with liberal groups on the other side of the Barrett nomination. It is in fact not opposing the Barrett nomination. I apologize for the error.]

1:03 — The Whitehouse circles are beginning to look like an NFL playbook but it is all x’s and no o’s.  What he is describing as funding briefs and opposition campaigns is also evident among liberal groups.

1:06 — I happen to support same-sex marriage but I do not see why conservatives should not be organizing to appoint conservative judges as liberal groups organize to appoint liberal judges.  These campaigns constitute forms of political speech and association.

1:08 — Whitehouse is noting that these decisions are all 5-4. However, the problem is the five conservatives voting as a group, not the four liberals voting as a group.

1:16 — Barrett is now responding to Cruz on the importance of the protection of the freedom of religion and other rights. These are “breather” questions for a nominee.

1:18 — Cruz is noting that even if Roe were overturned, it would revert to a matter of state law.

1:22 — Cruz is hitting Whitehouse. Of the top 20 organizations giving to political causes, the vast majority of SuperPac donors gave to Democrats not Republicans.  He is hitting the dark money hypocrisy in omitting liberal dark money.

1:30 — I have to go teach my Supreme Court class.

2:58 — I am back from the Supreme Court class where we ironically were debating the ACA case.  We all give two votes on the merits and the predicted outcome.  On the prediction, the class voted overwhelmingly that the ACA would likely not be struck down and the mandate provision would be viewed as a severable.

2:59 — Sen. Coons is challenging Barrett on her criticism of the Roberts decision in ACA. Many of us criticized his logic and analysis.  Even those in support of the ACA, criticized Roberts’ analysis including myself.

3:00 — Sen. Coons expressed surprise that the ACA was back before the Court.  Again, there is a lack of clarity.  The drafters and the Obama Administration insisted that the mandate was the thumping heart of the ACA and that the ACA could not exist without it.  Roberts referred to that assumption.  Now the mandate is dead. Obviously there is a question based on what the Obama Administration argued and the Robert court decided in upholding the Act.

3:04 — Coons is objecting that the DOJ is failing to defend a federal law as a violation of its duty. It is a fair point but the Obama Administration also refused to defend federal statutes like the Defense of Marriage Act — and Coons supported that position.

3:07 — Coons is raising Trump’s reference to any challenge to the election as a reason to push for the confirmation. Coons is again raising recusal.  The problem is that impartiality would not be reasonably questions simply because Barrett was nominated shortly before the election.  Indeed calling for her recusal is itself an effort to influence the result in such a challenge.

3:15 — Sen. Hawley got Barrett to say that she disagreed on cases with Scalia when she clerked for him.

3:17 — Barrett is again discussing her speaking to the Blackstone program during the summer. She also said that she signed that pledge raised by Leahy on the way out of church 15 years ago. The statement affirmed her pro-life view and it was something that the church community was supporting.

3:57 — Blumenthal is again demanding recusal while blaming others for undermining her integrity.  Blumenthal insisted that her non-recusal would be “a dagger at the heart” of our democracy. It is bizarre. Again there is no plausible grounds for recusal. Then after discussing the impropriety of politics being perceived as influencing the Court, Blumenthal “shared” a letter asking her to “please protect” a little boy. It is a direct call for her to vote based not on the law but the policy or persons involved in a law.  These are incredibly moving stories but this is not the role of a jurist.  She is expected to rule on her view of the law not her view of the benefits of the law.

4:15 — Blumenthal is continuing the individual case stories and saying that these individuals are asking for answers from Barrett. These are moving stories but Blumenthal is demanding answers to questions that prior nominees have refused to answer.  Blumenthal supported nominees like Kagan in refusing such answers. Yet, Blumenthal is saying that her answer is “chilling” and “horrifying” and “fearful.”

4:22 — Blumenthal just misrepresented the Kanter case as usurping legislative authority with Barrett’s own policy decision on guns. You can disagree with her view of the Constitution, but she was ruling on the scope of individual right. Judges do not usurp legislative authority in such opinions. They are ruling that they lack the authority.  Again, you can disagree but Barrett was demonstrably not writing on her view of policy.

4:27 — Blumenthal is now utterly unmoored from the realities of Kanter. He said that she usurped the legislative judgment on dangerous people. Barrett actually said that the right could be taken away from dangerous people but you had to show they are dangerous.

4:41 — Sen.. Hirono is now giving new stories about those who might be harmed by Barrett voting against the ACA. “What the heck?”  She asked Barrett is these tragic stories should influence her.  Barrett answered correctly that she would rule on the law.

Hirono is expressing disbelief that these tragic stories would not be considered “legal arguments.” They are not legal arguments standing alone. They are tragic and examples of real world consequences, which are often considered but are not necessarily determinative.

4:54 — Hirono is demanding “precedent” based on “real-life impacts.” That is not a legal analysis but simply upholding laws based on your agreement with the policy. She has called the distinction between policy and law as a “fiction.” That certainly makes this hearing simpler. It is all just politics.

5:00 — Hirono just accused Barrett of using offensive language for referring to “sexual preference.”

5:35 — Sen. Booker is now grilling Barrett on her ability to empathize. So Barrett is now expected to express empathy on demand? We are all moved by these stories but they are not the victims of Judge Barrett and the stories are not relevant to her view on the narrow and technical issue of severability in a statute like the ACA.

5:44 — There is actually a substantive discussion that has broken out by accident in the hearing.  Booker and Barrett are discussing the case of Smith case and Barrett did a good job in explaining why she ruled against the Illinois DOT employee.  Unfortunately, Booker moved on. However, Barrett was noting that while she said in the case that “the n-word is an egregious racial epithet” she held that there had to be evidence that the use of the word altered conditions in the workplace.

5:50 — Booker is now raising again the use of the term “sexual preference” rather than “sexual orientation.”

6:54 — We are back by Sen. Kamala Harris is literally speaking to the public on the need for pandemic relief.

6:56 — once again Barrett is virtually a non-entity as the case for the ACA is made to the public. It can only be repeated that the ACA case is exceptionally unlikely to result in the striking down of the ACA and concerns a narrow technical issue of severability.

6:58 — Harris just said that the GOP needs just one more vote to strike down the Act and “this is happening.”

7:26 — Kennedy is repeatedly asking if Barrett is a liar.  This is almost as painful as Booker repeatedly asking if she is empathic.

7:30 — Interesting comment by Barrett that suggested that if you have not thought about issues by middle age you are probably not qualified for the Court.  Notably, Thomas said that he had no views on abortion and had not really thought though the issue.

292 thoughts on “The Barrett Hearing — Questions and Answers”

  1. A Study In Opposites

    Amy Coney Barrett – An eligible candidate, productive reverent mother of 5 and sibling of 6, parents married and citizens at the time of the candidate’s birth, graduated first in her class with a Juris Doctor summa cum laude from Notre Dame Law School on a full-tuition scholarship, advanced in her career on achievement and merit, an actual, bona fide American.

    Kamala Harris – An irrefutably ineligible candidate, barren desecrating mother of none and sibling of 1, parents divorced and not citizens at the time of the candidate’s birth, graduated with a Juris Doctor from a black college while being support by a LEOP Program, advanced in her career by vice; by providing favor to her political benefactor and married lover, the daughter of two foreign citizens living in America.

    1. A confident woman in command of the facts and her arguments doesn’t need to obnoxiously, condescendingly say, “I’m speaking.”

        1. What people saw was that Kamala is not POTUS material. What people watched was a staged, canned, rehearsed, planned “line” that she delivered with smirking condescension. Put Kamala next to ACB and the glaring difference in both skill and intellect is hard to miss. ACB is in command of herself. Kamala, not so much, and definitely not without a script.

      1. A confident man in command of the facts and his arguments doesn’t need to obnoxiously, condescendingly interrupt a woman, making clear that she needs to remind him that she’s speaking.

          1. One can debate without interrupting. If you think interrupting is part of a debate, then putting the interrupter in his place is also part of a debate.

            1. Absolutely. But as usual Kamala delivered her ‘line’ in a phony, canned, rehearsed fashion and then her campaign had the merchandise and ads up and ready to roll out the very next morning just as they had “That little girl was me” tee shirts all ready to go after her planned attack on Joe Biden. She’s a complete phony.

              1. No, Kamala is really, really hard to watch. Like this….”It was a debate! hahahaha! It was a debate! hahahehehe! I didn’t mean any of it! hehehehehawhaw”

                  1. The poiint is Kamala Harris is in no way presidential material. Like Hillary, she’s not “it” and she never will be.

                  2. I said: ”It was a debate! hahahaha! It was a debate! hahahehehe! I didn’t mean any of it! hehehehehawhaw”

                    More accurate: ”It was a debate! hahahaha! It was a debate! hahahehehe!” cackled Kamala. “So you didn’t mean any of it?” asked Colbert.
                    “It was a debate! hehehehehawhaw. It was a debate! hehehawhaw” cackled Kamala the fraud.

        1. Kamala smirked and made faces, got frustrated, looking to the moderator to help her, and then delivered her canned ‘line.’ Pence was in command of himself and the facts. Kamala was not in command of herself, or the facts.

            1. The big gripe that has been provided on this blog is that Trump makes these grimaces and says harsh things. That is true, but his successes are phenomenal from the economy to foreign policy.

              Kamala has everything, grimaces, harsh and rude replies, inconsistency, lies and stupidity. Nothing good. All bad including her running mate.

    2. George…. she is only 1/4 black. 3/4 Indian (asian). Kamala and her sister were raised like black girls because there were more perks, more sympathy, more free stuff awaiting them in the liberal California culture as black girls, than as Indian Americans.

      1. She’s wealthy Jamaican black. Child of privilege. Her father’s family owned largest slave plantation in Jamaica.

        1. Anonymous, that means one of her female ancestors was raped by the plantation owner. Think these things through maybe.

          1. Not necessarily rape in this case. Her female ancestor was, according to her own father, the actual descendant of the plantation and slave owner.

            “According to Harris’ father Donald Harris, a retired Stanford University economics professor, the Harris family descends from a 19th-century slave owner, Hamilton Brown.

            “My roots go back, within my lifetime, to my paternal grandmother Miss Chrishy (née Christiana Brown, descendant of Hamilton Brown who is on record as plantation and slave owner and founder of Brown’s Town) and to my maternal grandmother Miss Iris (née Iris Finegan, farmer and educator, from Aenon Town and Inverness, ancestry unknown to me). The Harris name comes from my paternal grandfather Joseph Alexander Harris, land-owner and agricultural ‘produce’ exporter,” Harris allegedly wrote in an article for Jamaica Global, according to Snopes.

            Brown owned multiple plantations throughout the 19th-century, even going so far as to say slaves were “comfortable” in Jamaica, according to a pamphlet from 1832 entitled “Three months in Jamaica” that documented life on sugar plantations. Brown also advocated against the abolition of slavery, per Snopes.”

  2. Not yet mentioned by Professor Turley is the question raised by Hirono. I don’t know, but maybe Professor Truly didn’t want to dignify it.

    Democratic senator asks Amy Coney Barrett if she has ever sexually assaulted someone
    Hirono noted that she asks those two questions of all nominees who come before committees on which she sits

    Mazie Hirono of Hawaii asks Supreme Court nominee questions about sexual assault, harassment

    Sen. Mazie Hirono, D-Hawaii, asked a question pertaining to an issue that came up quite a bit during Justice Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation hearing but had yet to come up during Judge Amy Coney Barrett’s hearing: whether the Supreme Court nominee had ever sexually assaulted someone….

    “Since you became a legal adult, have you ever made unwanted requests for sexual favors, or committed any physical or verbal harassment or assault of a sexual nature?” Hirono asked.

    “No, Senator Hirono,” Barrett replied.

    “Have you ever faced discipline or entered into a settlement related to this kind of conduct?” Hirono then asked.

    “No, Senator,” Barrett said.

    https://www.foxnews.com/politics/democrat-amy-coney-barrett-sexually-assaulted-someone

  3. Leslie Proll: “Just a reminder: Amy Coney Barrett would never have become an appellate judge if GOP Senate had confirmed President Obama’s nominee Myra Selby, a Black woman, to Indiana seat on 7th Circuit in 2016. But GOP blocked Selby, kept seat open & Trump filled it w/Barrett. #CourtPacking”

    Meanwhile, Barrett won’t say that every President should commit to a peaceful transfer of power.

      1. I’m a Democrat. I accept that Trump is President and Pence is VP. And I hope that they’re overwhelmingly rejected in Nov.

        1. CTHD: “I accept that Trump is President and Pence is VP. And I hope that they’re overwhelmingly rejected in Nov.”

          ****

          Yeah, CTHD, you have said that before. Many times. I think we all get it. You are tired of the country winning.

    1. Repeal the 19th Dumbmendment – it’s so hysterical and incoherent.

      Men persist.

      Women make the men who persist.

      Whatever will women do without affirmative action gifted by men?

      Abortion is solely a woman’s concern about her body, right?

      Except that women make men and men and women are disappearing in America because women have failed to do their duty to their country.

      The American fertility rate is in a “death spiral.” ‘

      Women are literally killing America.

      The population is being imported.

      How stupid does a man have to be to listen to a woman?

      1. “Except that women make men and men and women are disappearing in America because women have failed to do their duty to their country.’

        Their duty to their country?

        Do tell.

        1. Your argument is that nations should not exist.

          If women do not have a duty to make the nation, the nation will not exist.

          There is existence and there is nothing.

          The following is the nation whose women fail to do their duty:

          ________________________________________________

          Can you see it above?

          It’s nothing.
          _________

          The American population is being imported.

          America’s fertility rate is in a “death spiral.”

          Women are killing America.

    2. 2020 is a “fake,” illegal and unconstitutional election. Tuesday, one day, is election day. A voter must present at a polling place, be identified, be certified, receive a ballot, execute a ballot and submit a ballot. Diplomats and military personnel must be allowed to vote locally and have a tally taken and reported. Voter manipulation and ballot harvesting are anathematic, immoral, unethical, illegal and unconstitutional. Strict vote criteria must be re-implemented. A vote is a solemn, personal and private affair. The American Founders established a restricted-vote republic, distinctly not a one man, one vote dumbocrazy. Tytler proved that governments engendered from votes by parasites in the public treasury will always end in dictatorship.

  4. Sen. Maizie Hirono keeps it classy:

    “Sen. Mazie Hirono asks ACB “since you became a legal adult, have you ever made unwanted requests for sexual favors or committed any verbal or physical harassment or assault of a sexual nature?””

    The judge offered a decorous denial. I’m trying to imagine someone who knows without fail whether his attempts at seduction are wanted or unwanted before he makes them. I’m also trying to imagine who ca. 1992 would have turned down a proffer from the young Amy Coney. (I’m also trying to imagine who just walks up to someone else and says ‘wanna f!ck?”).

    1. Hirono asks all nominees. There’s nothing wrong with that, given how many powerful people are guilty of it.

      1. How many people even if guilty are likely to affirmatively answer this question? It is not a serious question; it is a show question.

      2. Hirono is hiding behind BS. She “asks all nominees”. She has to be on the committee to ask the question so her response was quite misleading.

          1. She started the question in Jan 2018. That is a couple of years not several. That means they would all be Trump nominees. Hirono weaponized the Me To movement.

            Though only running for VP and the position of President should Biden’s mental capacity fall and the 25th amendment is enabled shouldn’t Hirono be asking that question of Kamala Harris?

            To paraphrase an apt statement made about Hirono’s time one person remarked that ‘everyone that listened to it is dumber for it’.

            1. Trump has nominated over 200 judges, and it’s not a weapon if the person hasn’t done anything inappropriate.

              It would be great to have Trump, Pence, Biden, and Harris all answer that question under oath, don’t you think? Trump is trying to avoid two depositions right now.

              1. ” don’t you think?”

                If you and Hirono think this reasonable then go all the way. ‘Have you ever murdered anyone, robbed a bank, stole, cheated etc.’ and then add ‘Did you ever have dealings with Harvey Weinstein, Epstein, Avenatti’? In fact why have Hirono ask the questions, why not a trained interrogator? By the way, when did you stop beating your wife?

      3. Hirono asks all nominees. There’s nothing wrong with that,

        You mean she makes an a** of herself every time? Does that make this better or worse?

  5. The Barrett Comedy Festival
    _______________________

    “You can’t handle the truth!”

    – Colonel Jessup
    _____________

    You can’t handle the scope and breadth of American freedom.

    You didn’t read the 10th Amendment…”OR TO THE PEOPLE.”

    The whole thing is one grand joke. Put Biden in front of a committee hearing. His pumpkin-brained head would explode.

    To wit,

    Biden is no stranger to telling lies about his civil rights bona fides. His “I was arrested marching with Mandela” whopper was debunked almost immediately.

    In February, Biden repeatedly told a story about getting arrested while trying to visit Nelson Mandela in South Africa in the late 1970s. But the campaign later acknowledged this was not true following a New York Times report that challenged the claim. Andrew Young, a United Nations ambassador who traveled with Biden to South Africa, told the Times, “I was never arrested and I don’t think [Biden] was, either.”

    – PJ Media
    _________

    Have a hearing on Obamacare under the name of Barrett??? Let’s nip this idiocy in the bud. Article 1, Section 8, provides Congress the power to tax for “…general Welfare…,” omitting and, therefore, excluding any power to tax for individual welfare, specific welfare, charity or redistribution of wealth. The entire American welfare state is unconstitutional including, but not limited to, affirmative action, quotas, welfare, food stamps, rent control, social services, forced busing, minimum wage, utility subsidies, WIC, TANF, HAMP, HARP, TARP, Agriculture, Commerce, Education, Labor, Energy, Obamacare, Social Security, Social Security Disability, Social Security Supplemental Income, Medicare, Medicaid, “Fair Housing” laws, “Non-Discrimination” laws, etc

    Obamacare does not address “…general…” or ALL people but merely a few – rational, sane, actual Americans wouldn’t want anything to do with Obama-welfare-heatlhcare – admittedly, the parasites in America love every form of “free stuff.”

    The Founders did not preclude voting by all the parasitic wack jobs, unfortunately, but it did preclude the entire American welfare state. In other words, even if those who were not intended to vote by the Founders ended up voting, they could not vote for central planning (the treasury/fed/military/industrial complex), control of the means of production (i.e. unconstitutional regulation), redistribution of wealth or social engineering.

    The 5th Amendment right to private property is not qualified by the Constitution and is, therefore, absolute. Congress has no power to interfere with the possession or disposition of private property; none whatsoever.
    ______________

    “[Private property is] that dominion which one man claims and exercises over the external things of the world, in exclusion of every other individual.”

    – James Madison
    ______________

    The Constitution provides maximal freedom to individuals while severely limiting and restricting government.

    Government exists merely to facilitate the maximal freedom of individuals by providing security and infrastructure (i.e. “…general Welfare…”) such as roads, water, sewer, electricity, etc.

    Karl Marx wrote the Communist Manifesto 59 years after the adoption of the Constitution because none of the principles of the Communist Manifesto were in the Constitution. Had the principles of the Communist Manifesto been in the Constitution, Karl Marx would have had no reason to write the Communist Manifesto. The principles of the Communist Manifesto were not in the Constitution then and the principles of the Communist Manifesto are not in the Constitution now.
    __________________________________________________________

    Try this one which Barrett must adhere to:

    “Courts…must…declare all acts contrary to the manifest tenor of the Constitution void.”

    “[A] limited Constitution … can be preserved in practice no other way than through the medium of courts of justice, whose duty it must be to declare all acts contrary to the manifest tenor of the Constitution void. Without this, all the reservations of particular rights or privileges would amount to nothing … To deny this would be to affirm … that men acting by virtue of powers may do not only what their powers do not authorize, but what they forbid.”

    – Alexander Hamilton

    1. I should clarify that that’s an emergency stay while the case continues in the 9th Circuit. But the effect is the same: they will be ending the census count before original deadline. How do the “originalists” on the Court justify this?

      Jonathan Myerson Katz: “But the important thing is that the norm breaking stops the second the Democrats come to power”

      1. penetrating to the heart of the issue, should illegal immigrants be counted.,

        there was a rational basis not to do so and that decision was taken by the authority in charge of it. this all emerges from those who want to count undocumented migrants aka illegal immigrants.

        which is in every instance Democratic party partisans who calculate that they will gain advantage from it

        this is also associated with the regional divergence in the interests of the states where migrants first come to settle, like CA and NY, versus the vast flyover country which has a large native born proportion of the population

        I have not studied the legal aspects of that but purely as a political matter, no, illegals should not be counted and it’s another patent attempt by the Democratic party to dilute and disenfranchise native born citizens. I vehemently object to that as much as if I were Bill the Butcher himself. I dont approve of all the particular biases this figure expresses in the clip, just the general bias in favor of natives. I wear nativism with pride

        1. I have no reason to believe your assumption that this is about counting illegal immigrants rather than about undercounting poor citizens and poor legal aliens. I’m not surprised that you talk about “where migrants first come to settle, like CA and NY” and omit states like TX.

          1. Texas is an odd one and I left it out because it is so massive geographically and while it has a large population like California another massive state, and while it unlike California in many ways. I can’t quite figure it out but I think this relates to factors in politics, namely, how conservative Democrats were there before LBJ turned face in 64–

            and also economic factors like the predominance of oil industry over computer geekery.

            Then there are differences inside the Hispanic population of Texas compared to California also intriguing. The California Mex-Americans seem to have a more leftist bent than the Texas Mex-Ams by far. this may have something to do with the economic factors I alluded to. It may also have to do with social factors related to migration from Mexico. It may be, and I am just hypothesizing here, that the internal regions of Mexico which abut the border, have contributed a more socially conservative influx of population, than the migrants which went to California, who may have been more urbane and less rural to begin with. Hence their greater political “progressiveness.”

            I will give you one small example lest you suspect i am just pulling this from my fevered racist imagination.

            “Chicano” is a name for Hispanic Americans that originated in California circles. Recall Cesar Chavez, who did his organizing work in California. He used that word a lot.

            Mexican Americans from Texas, usually do not call themselves Chicanos. I have not met a few I have met a lot. They call themselves Hispanic or Mexican in my experience. I have found a lot of them are ethno-nationalistic in a very healthy and positive way, with the Mexican pride stuff.

            You might also contrast that to east coast Hispanics, who are a lot more diverse. Puerto Ricans and Dominicans for example. I have found my Mexican friends from Texas often do not want to be counted with them.

            So Texas has something different going on with the migrant population. Different economic factors, and different political ones. Texas is a different state in so many ways, I can’t jam it into my generalities, it’s unique in so many ways.

            Also, as a viable nation state in a post-US breakup, Texas would be an entirely viable nation of its own in almost every respect. Really California too. Not co-states in some sort of rump America, but independent states in their own right. But for different reasons.

            I think of the United States more as a united group of states more than a lot of other people do. Its fine for them to think that way, and it’s fine for me to think differently.

  6. Politicians parading out these photos and stories of people is shameless circus performance. It completely demeans those peoples’ losses.

    1. They don’t care. Politcs trumps everything when it comes to the shameless Democrats. Hawaii should be ashamed of Mazie Hirono.

            1. They gave far too much credence and deference to the lying of Blasey Ford, that’s for certain. What a disgrace.

              1. She wasn’t the only relevant witness. They refused to hear from most of the witnesses.

                You think Blasey Ford was lying. But as far as I know, people didn’t submit complaints claiming that she was lying, whereas dozens of people *did* submit complaints alleging that Kavanaugh lied under oath about a variety of things. If he lied under oath, he should be disbarred, just like Bill Clinton.

                I already linked to a page that has all of the judicial complaints filed against Kavanaugh, many alleging perjury.
                If any complaints were filed that alleged Blasey Ford committed perjury, please link to them, like l did for the complaints against Kavanaugh.

                  1. I don’t care about your personal opinion that she was lying. If you have actual evidence, not personal opinion, present it.

                    It appears that you have no actual evidence. The Judicial Watch complaint doesn’t allege any perjury on Blasey Ford’s part.

                    I’m well aware of the 10th Circuit’s decision (and I hope that the HJC will eventually take it up), but the fact remains that dozens of people alleged that Kavanaugh committed perjury, based on their eye witness knowledge of some things that he testified about.

                    1. She originally complained she had problems traveling because she was afraid to fly. That ‘fear’ vanished when it was learned she regularly flew. Perhaps not a statement under oath but it established her as a liar even before she got to D.C.

                      It’s little late to autopsy her testimony but to much of America she is a shameless fraud stood up by the Democrats.

                    2. “It is unclear why these politicians and pundits claim to believe Ford, given the lack of evidence in support of her serious accusations. Here are 21 reasons reasonable people may doubt Ford’s claims about Kavanaugh.”

                      1. There Is No Evidence that Ford and Kavanaugh Ever Met

                      2. Leland Keyser Said She Did Not Have ‘Any Confidence’ in Her Friend’s Story

                      3. Friends Pressured Keyser to Change Her Story

                      4. All Alleged Witnesses Strongly Dispute the Claim

                      5. Ford’s Father Supported Kavanaugh’s Confirmation

                      6. Ford Doesn’t Know the Location

                      7. Ford Doesn’t Know How She Arrived

                      8. Ford Does Not Know How She Got Home

                      9. Ford Does Not Know the Date or Even What Time of Week

                      10. Ford Somehow Remembers She Had Only One Beer, But Not Other Details

                      11. Kavanaugh’s Contemporaneous Calendars Support His Claim

                      12. Ford Changed the Date of the Incident by Years from Her Initial Stories

                      13. Character Witnesses from the Time Support Kavanaugh

                      14. Ford’s First Mention of Kavanaugh’s Name is 2012, After He Became a National Figure

                      15. False Claims Were Made about Ford’s Inability to Fly

                      16. Ford Scrubbed Her Social Media

                      17. Ford Said She Wanted to Stay Confidential, But First Call Was to Washington Post

                      18. Ford’s Attorney Admitted a Motive of Desiring an Asterisk by Kavanaugh’s Name

                      19. Ford Has Benefited Politically, Financially, and Socially

                      20. Nothing in Kavanaugh’s Past Remotely Similar to the Claim for 37 Years

                      21. Memory Manipulation?

                      https://thefederalist.com/2019/12/02/21-reasons-not-to-believe-christine-blasey-fords-claims-about-justice-kavanaugh/

                    3. None of which is an eye witness statement that Ford committed perjury, Anonymous @6:01pm
                      Apparently you have no actual evidence that she lied under oath.

                    4. There were no eye witnesses to the story Blasey Ford likely made up – even the best friend she claimed was there with her at the party had no recollection of any such event. Her attorneys knew the various lies and Judicial Watch filed a complaint against her lawyers.

                    5. Blasey Ford talked about other things, just like Kavanaugh did. That’s why so many eye witnesses to other things allege that Kavanaugh lied under oath. As for what she alleged, lots of court cases only involve conflicting testimony without additional witnesses, and juries decide who is more credible. The fact that so many people allege Kavanaugh lied about other things makes him less credible.

                      As for “Judicial Watch filed a complaint against her lawyers,” the complaint did not allege any lies by Blasey Ford. Did you even read it?

                      It’s now 2 years later, and as best I can tell, the DC Bar didn’t impose any disciplinary actions in response to that complaint after investigating. You can look it up here: https://www.dcbar.org/attorney-discipline/disciplinary-decisions

                    6. CTHD: “None of which is an eye witness statement that Ford committed perjury, Anonymous @6:01pm
                      Apparently you have no actual evidence that she lied under oath.”
                      ***
                      Not entirely true. There are more things that point to dishonesty than eye witness disputes. In her case her own testimony and external statements shape up to a story that is fundamentally flawed. Lying about flying is one. Her ridiculous story about modifications on her home was another. Her silly little girl voice in testimony that she did not use on other occasions is another. Her peculiar, selective memory in which she is vague on significant details but precise on trivia. Her polygraph deceptions. I suspect that many who officially believed her had private doubts. I would go so far as to guess that even CTHD doesn’t believe Ford’s story entirely. It sounds far too phony and convenient, not to mention incredible. Is there enough to charge her with perjury? Probably not. But one has to wonder what would emerge if anyone really looked into it with possible litigation in mind.

                    7. “I don’t care about your personal opinion that she was lying. If you have actual evidence, not personal opinion, present it.”

                      You have it backward. She couldn’t prove her case. Refused to provide evidence based on her claims that could have been exculpatory for Kavanaugh. Her own witnesses disagreed with her and her facts were all over the place. She should have been prosecuted.

                    8. “As for “Judicial Watch filed a complaint against her lawyers,” the complaint did not allege any lies by Blasey Ford. Did you even read it?”

                      No. I figured you would let me know what it said.

      1. Turley above notes examples (of Dems shamelessness):

        5:00 — Hirono just accused Barrett of using offensive language for referring to “sexual preference.”

        5:35 — Sen. Booker is now grilling Barrett on her ability to empathize.

    2. I bet those people agreed to their photos and stories being used, and they want the stories of their losses to help save others from similar losses.

    3. Republicans should put up a poster of the Constitution since this entity is missing from every Democrat’s ‘presentation.

  7. The defense of ACA is appalling. ACA has been a disaster on too many levels. Physicians spend >50% of time on the clock doing administrative tasks to comply with Federal mandates particularly CMS. Blow it all up. Patients serve as distant players in the financial troff where hospitals and payers feed like gluttons that ACA has made hopelessly worse. Until transparency is mandated on all participants, patients will continue to get shafted and receive sub-par treatments, physicians will be further pushed out of decision making re: patient care, and greedy corporations will frolic in the boondoggle that ACA has made health care in America.

    Transparency on price and performance at a bare minimum

    See

    Maryland Health Care Quality Reports
    https://healthcarequality.mhcc.maryland.gov/Article/View/f84086b8-f1c2-41f2-b0cb-2d7be92a36ab

    1. In over 4 years (including his 2016 campaign), Trump has never presented a healthcare plan of his own.

      If the ACA is “blown up,” then there is no guarantee for coverage of preexisting conditions, including COVID.

      By all means, improve it. But Trump has made no attempt to do that.

      1. I was referring to the current health care system of America. The present health care system should be blown up.

        Americans are sicker than ever despite our bragging about our health care system. Our health care system is a failure for most Americans regardless of income level. Here in Virginia, the 2 worst offenders of feeding at the financial trough of government and private payers and screwing patients are the 2 largest state university health systems. Governor Ralph Northam is to blame.

        https://khn.org/news/uva-health-system-sues-patients-virginia-courts-garnishment-liens-bankruptcy/

        ‘UVA Has Ruined Us’: Health System Sues Thousands Of Patients, Seizing Paychecks And Claiming Homes

        KHN’s findings, based on court records, documents and interviews with hospital officials and dozens of patients, show UVA:

        – Sued patients for as much as $1 million and as little as $13.91, and garnished thousands of paychecks, largely from workers at lower-pay employers such as Walmart, where UVA took wages more than 800 times.

        – Seized $22 million over six years in state tax refunds owed to patients with outstanding bills, most of it without court judgments, under a program intended to help state and local governments collect debts.

        – Sued about 100 patients every year who also happened to be UVA Health System employees and filed thousands of property liens over the years, from Albemarle County all the way to Georgia.

        – Dunned some former patients an additional 15% for legal costs, plus 6% interest on their unpaid bills, which over years can add up to more than the original bill.

        – Has the most restrictive eligibility guidelines for patient financial assistance of any major hospital system in Virginia. Savings of only $4,000 in a retirement account can disqualify a family from aid, even if its income is barely above the poverty level.

        The hospital ranked No. 1 in Virginia by U.S. News & World Report is taxpayer-supported and state-funded, not a company with profit motives and shareholder demands. Like other nonprofit hospitals, it pays no federal, state or local taxes on the presumption it offers charity care and other community benefits worth at least as much as those breaks. Democratic Gov. Ralph Northam, a pediatric neurologist, oversees its board.

      1. Cook Reports today predicts the GOP losing 7 Senate seats.

        “We are also increasing our current Senate projection from a gain of 2 to 7 seats for Democrats

        Many Republicans told me that holding Democrats to just a 51-49 majority may be a *good* night for the GOP”

        https://twitter.com/JessicaTaylor

  8. What is getting Spoofed?

    “Spoofing, as it pertains to cybersecurity, is when someone or something pretends to be something else in an attempt to gain our confidence, get access to our systems, steal data, steal money, or spread malware.”

    NJ Governor Murphy Signs Legislation Criminalizing a False 9-1-1 Call Based on Race or Protected Class 8/31/2020

    Governor Phil Murphy today signed legislation (A1906), which would amend current law to include false incrimination and filing a false police report as a form of bias intimidation. The bill also establishes crime of false 9-1-1 call with purpose to intimidate or harass based on race or other protected class.
    “Using the threat of a 9-1-1 call or police report as an intimidation tactic against people of color is an unacceptable, abhorrent form of discrimination,” said Governor Murphy. “This irresponsible misuse of our 9-1-1 system places victims in a potentially dangerous situation, and can erode trust between Black and Brown New Jerseyans and law enforcement. Individuals who choose to weaponize this form of intimidation should held be accountable to the fullest extent of the law.”
    “Over the past two years we’ve worked hard to build and strengthen trust between communities and law enforcement, and this law will help us further racial justice while keeping our residents safe,” said Attorney General Gurbir S. Grewal. “Not only is falsely calling 911 a form of intimidation against people of color that places its victims in danger, it interferes with 911 emergency operators trying to save lives and puts law enforcement at risk. This law demonstrates New Jersey takes addressing racial bias incidents seriously.”

    In a joint-statement, Assembly members Benjie Wimberly, Yvonne Lopez, Verlina Reynolds-Jackson, and Cleopatra Tucker said:
    “With the ongoing protests further highlighting the turbulent relationship between police officers and the black community, the insidious threat of a false 9-1-1 call or police report has never been clearer. We cannot allow anyone to call the police or file a report against someone simply because they do not like the victim’s race, gender, religion or some other identifier. The police are not personal enforcers to be called whenever someone’s identity offends you – they are to be called in the event of a true emergency. Today, our state makes it clear that this intimidation will not be tolerated here.”

    “Calling the police when no crime has occurred can be incredibly dangerous for victims of this attempt at bias intimidation, since officers have wide latitude to detain people in ways that can quickly escalate into life and death situations,” said Senator Nia Gill. “The adoption of this law moves us one step closer to ensuring that New Jersey’s police are not weaponized for purposes of bias intimidation, and those who attempt to do so will be held accountable under this law.”

    “As our country finds itself in the grips of racial and social unrest, those who seek to weaponize and enflame these tensions should be held accountable,“ said Senator Troy Singleton. “Not only are false 9-1-1 calls a waste of resources, but when they are used to harass or intimidate someone based on their race, religion, sexuality or other protected classes, they risk escalating it into a potentially deadly situation. Under this new law, anyone who files a false police report will be subject to criminal penalty.”

  9. Turley, how long do you have to wait in getting Bill Barr’s talking points? Does Barr OK everything you write? And of course you have permission from the Dear Leader right? Can you give us the details from the victory party after the republicans slam her thru? Are you already hired by the republicans {again} to take trump’s loss in the election to the courts? Do you at least get flowers time to time for your work on behalf of the republican party? I bet it’s nicer than flowers right?

  10. Turley, where the dark money goes is not the issue, it is the fact that Democrats have uniformly favored campaign finance laws and the GOP hasn’t and Democrats have opposed the Citizen’s United ruling and the GOP hasn’t.

    Turley is a GOP hack.

    1. Was it not the Supreme Court that made the decision about that kind of spending/funding….back when the Court was a “Liberal” Court?

      Where is the talking points on that from the Democrat Party?

      1. After the GOP assumes control of the US House, picks up seats in the US Senate and Trump begins his 2nd term, the GOP should do everything the Dems have threatened. Expand SCOTUS numbers, eliminate filibuster and press charges against every House member who collaborated in the coup of President Trump vis a vis Pelosi / Schiff / Nadler.

        No Justice = No Democrats

      1. Concerning Sheldon Whitehouse: Apparently, bumbling comedic actor Ed Wynn did not pass away in 1966, but instead, became a U. S. Senator from Rhode Island.

        1. Whitehouse will always be the slimy Senator from Rhode Island who shamelessly smeared Kavanaugh as a gang rapist and drunk as his wife and daughters sat and listened. He is a Disgusting human being.

  11. Osama Bin Laden had 21 kids, owned guns, and was extremely religious too. I mean, if that is what you are looking for in a Judge.

    1. Was Osama admitted to the Indiana bar or a federal district bar? Had he been a clerk for a federal appellate judge? Had he worked as an appellate judge?

  12. No reason to watch the hearings. Republicans have a majority and will vote for any Republican judge. She will claim she has not made up her mind about cases she has clearly made up her mind about, and was chosen because she has.

    Only solution for Democrats is to take the Senate and then pack the court, and make sure this judge is one of only 13 votes on the court.

      1. Only solution for Democrats is to take the Senate and then pack the court, and make sure this judge is one of only 13 votes on the court.

        The only solution for what problem?

        1. The problem that the court which our founders designed to indirectly reflect American voters by having them nominated by the elected President is now manned by 4 – about to be 5 – justices nominated by the loser of the popular vote, and one of those seats was stolen from an actually twice elected President by a Senate majority – representing a popular minority – which purposefully failed it’s constitutional duty. This court is illegitimate and out of touch with the American people.

          That problem.

          1. The court is supposed to be apolitical and leave legislation to Congress. They do not represent a party or a position . They represent the Constitution.

            1. Kurtz, the constitution does not include a winner take all EC but it does include the Senate’s responsibility and duty to advise and consent on SC nominations. The constitution is on my side, not yours, as is majority opinion of the American people. Eventually it will prevail and we’ll take no prisoners.

              1. I disagree.

                https://constitutioncenter.org/interactive-constitution/interpretation/article-ii/clauses/350
                You will need either SCOTUS to agree with YOU, which is totally unlikely, or, amend the Constitution to get rid of it.
                __________________________________________________________________________________________________

                The colloquially-named Electoral College arises from Article II, Section 1, Clauses 2 and 3, which state that:

                Each State shall appoint, in such Manner as the Legislature thereof may direct, a Number of Electors, equal to the whole Number of Senators and Representatives to which the State may be entitled in the Congress; but no Senator or Representative, or person holding an Office of Trust or Profit under the United States shall be appointed an Elector.

                The Congress may determine the Time of chusing the Electors, and the Day on which they shall give their Votes; which Day shall be the same throughout the United States.

                Under the further original provisions of Article II, Electors cast ballots not for one candidate for president but for two, with the second-place finisher becoming vice-president. No one originally expected that there would be national parties that nominated candidates and slated a ticket for president and vice-president. The strange two-vote feature nevertheless led almost immediately to a serious political crisis in the election of 1800 when Democratic-Republican Thomas Jefferson defeated Federalist John Adams 73-65 in the Electoral College but then tied his own nominal running mate, Aaron Burr, 73-73. The mischievous Burr refused to stand down in the face of this embarrassing constitutional glitch, thus throwing the process into the U.S. House of Representatives under the so-called “contingent election” procedures in which each state’s U.S. House of Representatives delegation casts a single vote for president and the winner of the majority becomes president. The resulting contingent election in the House became a nightmare of its own when the lame-duck Federalist-controlled Congress took an exhausting six days and 36 ballots to choose Jefferson, who the Federalists ultimately considered the lesser of two evils.

                The most glaring early bugs in the system—the real possibility of ties, the fact that the president and vice-president could represent different political parties as had happened when Adams and Jefferson served together in 1796—were ironed out by the Twelfth Amendment in 1804. But our unique Electoral College system has continued to shape the country’s politics in fundamental ways that both supporters and critics would agree depart from democratic norms.

                Under Article II, the states are allotted a number of Electors equal to their Congressional delegation, which is the number of Representatives plus two for the Senators, but the actual Electors are appointed according to rules set exclusively by the state legislatures themselves. Today, 48 states appoint all of their Electors on a “winner take all” basis from slates provided by the top vote-getter in their statewide popular election for president. But two states—Maine and Nebraska—award the Electors by Congressional District and give their remaining two electoral votes to the statewide winner. Historically, there has been an even more dizzying variety in the systems developed in each state. In the first presidential election, five state legislatures—in Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, New Jersey, and South Carolina—themselves simply designated presidential Electors without having any popular election at all. In four states, the voters elected all of the Electors. In Virginia, which had ten congressional districts, the General Assembly divided the Commonwealth into twelve presidential districts and conducted a popular election. In subsequent elections, there have been statewide elections, elections of Electors from single-member districts that mirror Congressional districts, elections of Electors from specially designed multi-member districts, elections in which only the Electors’ names appear on the ballot but not the names of the presidential candidates, elections in which the presidential candidates’ names appear on the ballot but not the names of the Electors, and even elections where the state legislatures have chosen not to appoint any Electors.

                All of these variations are allowable under the constitutional design. As the Supreme Court wrote in McPherson v. Blacker (1892), which rejected a constitutional challenge to a Michigan law providing for selection of Electors by a district system, “the appointment and mode of appointment of Electors belong exclusively to the states under the constitution of the United States.” We have no uniform national system for appointing Electors, which means the legislatures do not have to consult the public at all. When members of the Florida legislature in 2000 threatened to abandon the results of the statewide popular contest and appoint Electors for a particular candidate, the Supreme Court in Bush v. Gore (2000) appeared to endorse their power to do so by denying that citizens have a constitutional right to vote in presidential elections. As the majority put it, “The individual citizen has no federal constitutional right to vote for Electors for the President of the United States. . .” When it comes to presidential elections, the voters are at the mercy of the state legislatures.

                Although this lack of procedural uniformity has not proven especially controversial, this fact has: the Electoral College has periodically produced winners who clearly lost the national popular vote to an opponent. In at least five presidential elections—1824, 1876, 1888, 2000, and 2016—the presidential candidate who prevailed in the popular vote lost in the Electoral College. For example, in the disputed election of 2000, Vice President Al Gore received over 500,000 more votes than Governor George W. Bush did nationally, but lost to Bush in the Electoral College by a vote of 266 to 271, after the Supreme Court intervened, on equal protection claims, to halt a Florida Supreme Court order to recount ballots in some counties. Many people believe that the ability to carry the whole election by capturing this or that state—in our time it has been Florida and Ohio—increases the likelihood of strategic mischief and corruption in the electoral process.

                Supporters of the Electoral College credit it with preserving an important dimension of state-based federalism in our presidential elections and argue that it works to guarantee that our Presidents will have nationwide support.

                1. Kurtz, we don;t have to get rid of the EC – are you dense or just pretending to be? We need to get rid of winner take all state delegations and that can be done at the state level. Fair minded voters would likely choose that option if presented and I assume most are.

              2. as to your last comment that you will “take no prisoners” i have no clear idea what that means. if you are trying to scare me you failed. it is not I who need to fear what America would look like under that system, I am fully prepared in every way to exist under a one party state. I don’t prefer it, but, if that’s what I need to do one day, I can do it. I just hop on a plane and I have my choice of venues. But it will not be tolerated here.

                Perhaps you mean that expected future election landslides will give you the chance to abuse power to transform America into a one-party Democratic state which has fake elections such as they do in various third world tin pot dictatorships., OF COURSE WE UNDERSTAND THAT IS WHAT YOU INTEND, from your gloating threatening words, “take no prisoners.”

                However, if not by amendment, then, you would have to achieve that transformation by WAR, because lawyers will not get that done for you.

                Really. If the electoral college is transformed by constitutional amendment, that would be legally valid. However, it is politically unacceptable to all the states between California and New York, except maybe Illinois, but yes, that would be unacceptable to us out here in flyover politically. Political will matters. Especially on something as big as that.

                We would rather fragment the union into peaceful neighboring states than submit to a perpetual tyranny run by one party. I know I am not alone when I say this. You can be just as sure that whatever plans Democrats are laying to turn America into a one party state, other people are laying plans to pull the plug on the experiment before that happens, if it ever appears likely. Just as the Civil war was resolved by the ultimate political means, and just as the War of Independence was resolved by the ultimate political means, so too may issues in our own future be so resolved as well.

                If a constitutional convention were convened to eliminate the Electoral College, it would just as result in a dissolution of the United States as it would such an amendment. By agreement, or not. But dissolution would result.

                Personally I foresee this issue as the breaking point for the Union. Like it or not, it may very well come to that at some point. Let’s just hope we can secure all the nukes at least as well as they did when the USSR fell apart.

                1. oh and if you think the rabble of BLM and ANTIFA will be a sufficient force to accomplish that tyranny, they will not., they are a fart in a skillet. maybe a big stinky loud fart but just a fart. they lack the numbers, organization, and firepower to force anywhere to submit to their mob rule except some pathetic armpits like Portland Oregon and other such cities as they have terrorized.

                  You would have to divide the United States Army. I can see from the headlines some people are gaming that already. Well. You would have to buy off more than a few pathetic old generals to get that one done.

                  If you think the SPECWAR community would ever submit to a one party Democratic tin pot tyranny in the US, you probably don’t know any of them. They might put a nasty thorn in anybody’s paw who tries. Ten thousand operators on the payrolls now and who knows how many retired, is a lot of people out there who one day might decide some fraggings are in order.

                  Just understand, we are already into Praetorianism to a degree, a small degree, and if we go farther into that territory, it may not work out the way you expect. but hey if the corrupt Democratic party leadership intends to test their luck abusing the American population, we will find out.

                  1. Kurtz, your infantile fantasies about an armed revolution of fat white guys preceded this discussion and you’re welcome to them. I’m an adult and have things to lose. So do you. Act like it.

                  2. For nearly 4 years we have heard unending nonsense about Trump as a dictator. No he isn’t even close. He can barely command his own staff. Rather it is the mutinous geeky General Hayden who thinks he wants to be a billy badzz if you read his stupid twitter feed.

                    https://twitter.com/GenMhayden

                    Right, the former head of the NSA who could read all our emails if he wanted to. Already the NSA is in itself as much a power as the Presidency and the head of the CIA probably passed that mark back when JFK got his ticket punched.

                    No, folks, Trump will not be the one to “pull a coup.,” But a coup is never out of the question where cretins like this are concerned.

                    But if they try, boy, they will have seriously miscalculated the submissiveness of the people.

                    1. “Right, the former head of the NSA who could read all our emails if he wanted to. Already the NSA is in itself as much a power as the Presidency and the head of the CIA probably passed that mark back when JFK got his ticket punched.”

                      Then the coup already happened it seems…

                2. Kurtz, the GOP is taking no prisoners and you don’t have a majority. Expect payback. There are no rules for the SC anymore. Enjoy.

                  1. Wrong, there are rules and you just don’t like them. Don’t turn your fit of personal dislike into a dire prognostication.

            2. The EC is not wise, Kurtz.

              It’s a holdover from slavery and represented a belief that the average voter should not be trusted.

              It means that votes do not count equally across states, which is anathema to the notion of equality under the law.

              We’ll see whether enough states sign on to the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact and whether that’s upheld as constitutional. Do you have an argument for that being unconstitutional? It’s an alternative to a constitutional amendment.

              Also, as JF noted, if states simply moved away from a winner-take-all state allocation of EC votes, that would move much closer to a national popular vote without requiring any change in the EC itself.

              1. I think it’s wise because it’s in my regional and social and political interests, and I see how it works to tie together a geographically large and diverse nation

                it’s also wise because it is a tempering effect on popular democracy

                the overall set of acceptable voters is always a political matter which people reckon however they do

                i reject the notion that every law or design which limits democracy or the franchise is somehow immoral.

                the fact it was associated with the Southern states and their political positions at the time the Union was formed does not trouble me.

                1. You aren’t and can’t explain what principle the EC is intended to uphold. You can claim it, but that is not an explanation.

                2. Wow, “the Southern states and their political positions at the time”

                  Slavery, Kurtz. You should be able to say that explicitly. If you need to read about it, an internet search on something like [founders rationale for the electoral college slavery] will pull up a lot of relevant reading.

                  You’ll find statements from Founders like Madison who preferred a popular vote but expected it would be hard to get the southern states to agree because their voting populations were smaller than the northern states: “There was one difficulty, however of a serious nature attending an immediate choice by the people. The right of suffrage was much more diffusive [i.e., extensive] in the Northern than the Southern States; and the latter could have no influence in the election on the score of Negr0es. The substitution of electors obviated this difficulty and seemed on the whole to be liable to the fewest objections.”

                  1. So what? Slavery explains a lot of things about American history right up until this day.

                    Oftentimes, not in the way that people understand it.

                    Let me be clear. I am white. I never owned slaves. I am not going to offer up my life and fortune to pay a debt I never owed to their remote descendants.

                    1. So say “slavery” instead of euphemistically referring to “the Southern states and their political positions at the time”

                      Deal with it forthrightly.

                      Moving to a popular vote doesn’t require you to “offer up [your] life and fortune.”

                    2. Im not responsible for the political dynamics of 1789. Im responsible for reckonging where we are today.

                      There is a regional dynamic in the US that is dividing us. The EC mitigates the strain. That’s what it did in early America too– mitigate regional divides.

                      Personally my interests lie with the interior and not on the coasts.

                      This is a geopolitical dynamic of tellurian versus thallasocratic social and political tendencies that go all the way back to the Pelopennesian war. I would be with Sparta if I had been alive in that day. See, Halford Mackinder Carthage, sea power. Rome, land power. England sea power versus Russia land power. You might say America is a sea power versus a rising Chinese land power.

                      But the dynamic operates in America too. The coastal areas are heavy on trade and logically hate Trump. The industrial and agricultural heartland likes him. He is a POTUS of the nation as a whole and has pursued a rational trade policy dispute with China that favors the heartland. It definitely does not favor California that was awash in PRC money.

                      Eventually, these strains will worsen. “financialization” is a process of deindustrialization which is also operative in the social divide. The coastal and big city regions make the big money off financial operations and then flyover land is responsible for feeding the nation and making such industrial whatever as we still have.

                      You may be up to your eyes in financial ties which blinds you to the crisis of the Rust Belt. The funny thing about Pete Buttigieg is that he was in tune to the social crisis of people in flyover growing up as he did in the Rust Belt. He is one of the people the oligarchs are advancing to try and mitigate these strains. But it’s clear that he was not fit for the second slot, they wanted that for Kamala, their local mercenary tried and true.

                      dont worry, IF you ever get your one party state, these regional strains won’t go away, and you’ll have to deal with them even once orange man bad and the repubican party is reduced to insignificance. but the social factors that lead into the present divide won’t go away

                    3. I’ve lived in both TX and MI, Kurtz, as well as near an agricultural part of CA, and I’ve traveled to most states in the U.S. Best not to make assumptions about my knowledge of the middle of the country and industrial and agricultural areas.

                    4. “Let me be clear. I am white. I never owned slaves. I am not going to offer up my life and fortune to pay a debt I never owed to their remote descendants.”

                      Kurtz, you are a blue meanie 🙂 What do you mean you don’t want to pay up? Kamala Harris should get reparations. Her family actually owned slaves but she considers herself part of the oppressed.

        2. What will you do if the Supreme Court merely declares the Court Packing scheme unconstitutional citing the 160 years of a 9-member court, that it has now become an ingrained institution in our American system and therefore is an informal part of our Constitution requiring a constitutional amendment to change? You see this has been done before by the Court. It’s the living, breathing, Constitution!

    1. Right, dems don’t accept loss or rejection. Their ideas are unpopular, so they’ve abandoned debate and persuasion in favor of tantrums, cheating and intimidation to win, then changing the rules so losing is no longer a concern.

      They’ll never have to be accountable to We the People, don’t have to do what the electorate wants. 60% of their own voters are not in favor of court packing! Dems are impervious to introspection, so this all can’t possibly be a flaw with their ideology, right? The logical conclusion to them is they need to cripple America and torch the Constitution and precedent.

    2. Guess you’ve never heard of litmus test questions and why they are frowned upon during a process like this.

      I guess you also think that if a political party doesn’t do a good enough job selling its platform to the American people and lacks the votes and senate/house seats to pass legislation or confirm appointments along the lines of that platform, the only solution is to end-around the entire political process.

      So, right, you’re a Democrat then.

  13. This is such a waste of time. It really doesn’t matter what this person says because Republicans are going to shove through her confirmation, and Democrats will vote against her, consistent with the wishes of the majority of the American people, who do not want this confirmation until after the election. It is simply not fair for likely lame ducks to put a 48 year old radical conservative on the SCOTUS for a lifetime appointment. She has made her anti-Roe and anti-ACA positions clear in law review articles she has written, her membership in radical anti-abortion groups and anti-abortion and anti-ACA speeches. She has even explained how to overturn Roe, and she has made up a new category of prior rulings that justify ignoring stare decisis: “super precedent”. It doesn’t matter what lies she tells today because trying to impeach a SCOTUS judge is difficult, if not impossible.Trump has made it clear he wants a 9th judge on the SCOTUS for the appeals he will file challenging his loss in November. This is just a game of words.

    1. Natch if it’s a waste of time then why are the Democrat Senators participating? You should listen, you may learn something useful. Im impressed with some of their probing and legitimate questions. The Republicans too of course.

      1. Kurtz, There are some legitimate questions being raised but I don’t think that is the idea behind any of the questions. Her job is to uphold the Constitution whether or not she likes what the Constitution says. That is the sole issue. We know she is competent and I think her record tells us that she will be loyal to the Constitution. Is there anything I am missing?

        1. Nope, she will do a great job Allan. It’s fine for the Democrat Senators to question here– this too is part of our glorious American system

          1. Yes, they can question her but they are not really examining her on the law. They are trying to score points for the election. So far she hasn’t been questioned on administrative law and lots of other things. She said that on some cases she disagreed with Scalia and I can bet which one that was. Thomas and Alito I believe voted opposite to Scalia on that case.

    2. Natasha, welcome the theater because that’s all this is and here’s to the Dem rubbing Barrett’s nose in her Garland comments and GOP noses in their attack on the ACA while a pandemic rages, and avoidance of a Covid relief bill. Cook today has the dems picking up between 7 and 9 Senate seats and some of them are on this committee.

      That’s all this is about and make it last until election time.

    3. as to words:

      ““Man acts as though he were the shaper and master of language, while in fact language remains the master of man. ”
      ― Martin Heidegger

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