The Supreme Court should look more like America, or so Republicans once thought

Following President BidenJoe Biden Dr. Hiro Yoshikawa: Cash aid benefits young children living in poverty US officials say Russia has 70% of troop build-up needed for full invasion: reports The ruling class and the Supreme Court MOREannounces he would appoint a black woman “of extraordinary qualifications, character, experience and integrity” to replace Justice Stephane BreyerStephen BreyerPence criticizes Biden’s pledge to appoint a black woman to the Supreme Court Despite intentions, Biden’s pledge to the Supreme Court is deeply flawed Judge Breyer’s political act of farewell MORE at the Supreme Court, Fox News performance artists and Republican politicians sounded their dog whistles.

“Biden did not mention the Supreme Court nominee’s legal qualifications, judicial philosophy or ability to do one of the most important jobs in the country,” he added. Tucker-CarlsonTucker CarlsonOvernight Defense & National Security — Pentagon deploys 3,000 troops to Europe Russia crisis exacerbates US political divisions Tucker Carlson donates to Marjorie Taylor Greene’s campaign MORE declared. “All he said was she’s going to be black and she’s going to be female because to him that’s all that matters.” Given Biden’s statement, Carlson added, George Floyd’s sister was “the obvious choice” for the High Court. “She’s not a judge or a lawyer or anything, but in this case, whatever. Obviously that’s not the point anymore – the law stuff.

Limiting consideration to people of the same race or gender, Sean HannitySean Patrick HannityThese people were subpoenaed by Jan. 6 panel Kayleigh McEnany delivered text messages to Jan. 6 panel: report GOP could learn something from Kenny Rogers player MORE of opinion, could be “illegal” or “unconstitutional”. Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzSunday Shows Preview: US Deploys Troops, Briefs Lawmakers Amid Russian-Ukrainian Tensions Pence Slams Biden’s Pledge to Appoint Black Woman to Supreme Court Karens” on a grocery store visit to Alexandria MORE (R-Texas) called it “offensive.” You know, you know, black women are, what, 6% of the population. He says to 94% of Americans, “I don’t give a damn about you, you’re not eligible… If you’re white, you’re out of luck. If you are a white woman, bad luck. You are not eligible.

Sen. Josh HaleyJoshua (Josh) David HawleySt. Louis Post-Dispatch slams Hawley: ‘Grossly unfit’ for job Pence criticizes Biden’s pledge to appoint black woman to Supreme Court US reveals Russia may be considering creating false pretense for US invasion MORE (R-Mo.) Warned Biden not to select a ‘woke activist’ who would bless his ‘campaign against parents, his abuse of the FBI, his refusal to enforce our immigration laws and his lawless vaccination mandates’ .

Emphasizing that “to the extent that President Biden received a mandate, it was to govern from the middle”, the senator. Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellTrump Responds to Pence Criticism GOP Sen. Cassidy Challenges RNC Censorship of Kinzinger, Cheney The Hill’s Morning Report – Biden Targets ISIS Terrorists, Defends NYPD MORE (R-Ky.) warned against “outsourcing” the choice of a candidate to the “radical left.”

Unlike Senator Lindsay Graham (RS.C.), who got “in the camp of making sure the court and other institutions look like America,” these white men don’t mention that since 1789, 108 of the 115 Supreme Court justices have been white men. They don’t seem to have considered the possibility of a black woman being extraordinarily qualified to serve on the Supreme Court.

They also failed to acknowledge that Biden is one of many presidents, Republicans and Democrats, seeking a Supreme Court nominee from a specific demographic.

A few weeks before the 1980 presidential election, Ronald Reagan declared: “It is time for a woman to sit among the highest jurists. I will also be looking for women to appoint to federal courts with the goal of bringing a better balance within the federal judiciary. On August 19, 1981, President Reagan nominated Sandra Day O’Connor to be the first woman to serve on the United States Supreme Court. O’Connor was confirmed by the Senate, 99-0.

White House attorney Peter Wallison also revealed that before appointing Antonin Scalia to the court, Reagan asked if he (Scalia) was “of Italian descent.” Showing what Wallison considered “usual American instincts,” the president said, “We don’t have an Italian American on the court, so we should have one.” »

In 1991, President George HW Bush insisted that race would play no role in his selection of a candidate to replace Thurgood Marshall, the first black justice on the Supreme Court. In a moment of half-coverage, however, an administration spokesperson told reporters that Clarence ThomasClarence ThomasPence criticizes Biden’s pledge to appoint a black woman to the Supreme Court Despite intentions, Biden’s Supreme Court pledge is deeply flawed Biden’s race- and gender-based SCOTUS plan has been overwhelmingly (and to rightly) rejected MORE got the green light because of “a semi-conscious feeling…that he was a black man to be replaced.” The aide then backtracked, “Hit that. He was the best person. And, as Jonathan Chait recently wrote, “it would take heroic levels of delusion” to believe that Thomas (none of whose opinions during his brief tenure as a federal appeals court judge “n was of great importance”, according to conservative constitutional expert Bruce Fein) “was selected on the basis of his professional achievements”.

During the 2016 presidential campaign, Donald Trump promised that all of his judicial nominees would be “chosen by the Federalist Society,” an organization of right-wing, libertarian lawyers who are certainly not interested in governing from the middle. In fact, it’s worth noting that the six conservative judges who currently sit on the court have ties to the Federalist Society and all six are Catholic, not a court that looks like America at all.

A few days after the death of Justice Ruth Bader GinsburgRuth Bader GinsburgJustice Breyer Durbin’s political farewell act: Some speaking out on Biden court pick ‘never voted for a black candidate’ McConnell seeks to turn down the heat in Supreme Court fight MORE, President TrumpDonald TrumpUN finds North Korea increased missile capabilities: DeSantis report, state AGs pledge to investigate removal of GoFundMe page for Canadian vaccine mandate protest The Class leader and the Supreme Court MORE announced: “I will nominate a candidate next week. It will be a woman – a very talented, very bright woman. We haven’t chosen yet, but we have many women on the list. When he named Amy Coney BarrettAmy Coney BarrettDespite his intentions, Biden’s Supreme Court pledge is deeply flawed, at a COVID superspreading event at the White House, Trump bragged that she would be “the first mother of school-aged children to serve on the Supreme Court.” The main reason “I prefer Barrett is the most obvious,” wrote Ramesh Ponnuru, editor of the National exam“It’s a woman.”

Although, alas, they too often used racial, ethnic and sexist dog whistles, Reagan, Bush 41 and Trump were right to want the Supreme Court to be more like America. And take positive action to make it happen.

Glenn C. Altschuler is the Thomas and Dorothy Litwin Professor of American Studies at Cornell University. He is the co-author (with Stuart Blumin) of “Rude Republic: Americans and Their Politics in the Nineteenth Century.

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