drown government in a bathtub

The Problem With Republicans (Justice in Waiting)

Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton speaks to the General Conference of the African Methodist Episcopal Church during their annual convention at the Pennsylvania Convention Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 8 July 2016. (Photo: Charles Mostoller/Reuters)

“I promise you that we will be united against any Supreme Court nominee that Hillary Clinton, if she were president, would put up.”

Sen. John McCain (R-AZ)

It’s not really a gaffe, is it? It’s an interesting headline from CNN: “John McCain: ‘I don’t know’ if Trump will be better for Supreme Court than Clinton”

Trump has released lists of 21 potential justices. He has pledged to choose from among those 21 when making Supreme Court selections, in a move that has earned him praise from conservatives, including his former rival in the Republican primary, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz.

Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) listens to testimony by U.S. Forces-Afghanistan Commander and Resolute Support Commander Gen. John Campbell, on Capitol Hill in Washington, 4 February 2016. (Photo by Manuel Balce Ceneta/AP Photo)Asked on the Dom Giordano program on 1210 WPHT Philadelphia radio whether Trump was the superior candidate on issues like the Supreme Court, the Arizona senator replied, “Uh, first of all, I don’t know, because I hear him saying a lot of different things.”

Later in the interview, McCain used the opportunity to make the case for fellow Republican Sen. Pat Toomey, who is locked in a close battle to retain his Senate seat in Pennsylvania. McCain promised that Republicans would be “united against any Supreme Court nominee” put forth by Clinton.

“I promise you that we will be united against any Supreme Court nominee that Hillary Clinton, if she were president, would put up,” McCain said. “I promise you. This is where we need the majority and Pat Toomey is probably as articulate and effective on the floor of the Senate as anyone I have encountered.”

Or, as Taylor Link fashioned the obvious lede for Salon:

Sen. John McCain is sure that if Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton wins, the Senate will continue to be an obstructionist mess.

In a Monday interview, the senator from Arizona said that Republican nominee Donald Trump is not necessarily a better candidate than Hillary Clinton when it comes to appointing Supreme Court justices and “promised” that Republicans wouldn’t approve any Clinton nominee to the Supreme Court.

Couldn’t see that one coming, eh?

(more…)

Your Republican Party: Raison d’Être Edition

Don't ask me, I'm just the Speaker of the Fucking House

Via Steve Benen:

msnbcAmericans first learned back on June 24, more than four months ago, about the House Republican plan to file a lawsuit against President Obama. Two weeks later, House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) announced the basis for the case: the GOP would sue to implement an obscure provision of the Affordable Care Act, which Republicans don’t actually want to see implemented.

There is a punch line; the actual complaint still has yet to be filed.

It is simple enough to explain what is going on here.

• Congressional Republicans decided their best strategy was to (A) stonewall President Obama on pretty much everything they could, and (B) combine this effort with an attempt to create a delegitimizing narrative in history—e.g., Birtherism, feet on the desk, what jacket the president is wearing, &c., in addition to the usual politics of working very hard to accomplish an outcome specifically so that one can then complain about that outcome.

• House Republicans might contend this is their only recourse, but that would be a lie. The simple fact is that the House can draft and adopt articles of impeachment at any time, but GOP leadership knows they have nothing.

• Hence, a lawsuit that will go exactly nowhere if it is ever filed; House GOP leadership already knows this.

• What is left, then, is a fundraising device. GOTO delegitimizing narrative. It’s not even a FOR/NEXT loop, but, rather, infinite spinning down the rabbit hole.

• When a Republican or one of those fake-independent conservative libertarians tells you government doesn’t work, remember that is not actually a policy assessment, but, rather, a policy goal—the GOP’s raison d’être.

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Benen, Steve. “The House GOP’s crumbling anti-Obama lawsuit”. msnbc. 27 October 2014.