So The Donald has another opportunity to shape the third branch of government.
In his first year and a half he’s been able to push through appellate court appointments at break neck speed. He’s shaping the judiciary in a far more right leaning bent than ever – some would argue it’s being shaped to the point it will no longer serve impartially as an institution. He now has an opportunity to appoint a second Supreme Court justice, which could have immense affect. What do the president’s actions, values, morals, and commentary courts tell us about what type of person he will appoint and what type of justice the person will be.
The president’s background is scattered enough to know absolutely nothing about who he will appoint. His success pandering to the far right, evangelicals, et al. though make it very clear that if he wants to continue this strong minority popularity, he’ll shoot to put in a justice who passes all the previously taboo litmus tests, such as abortion. He’ll also introduce his own set of litmus tests, like loyalty and inclination to dispose of the Russian Collusion matter. To the extent anyone believes there will be some sort of deliberation on the bona fides of an appointment, they are wrong. The only deliberations will relate to short term political expediency and self-preservation or perpetuation.
The reality of what type of justice the person will be is an equally wild guessing game. A true legal scholar will have plenty of writing and perhaps legal opinions to look to. While that may provide some indication of how they will rule, justices (who are after all human beings) do tend to change over time. A purely political appointment of someone without a judicial background, or even a robust legal background, is not out of the question. If the president’s only real concerns are self-preservation, and he succeeds in getting “his” man or woman on the bench, then we can surmise the president could walk. That is, if the Supreme Court were to decide the fate of the president vis-a-vis indictment, obstruction of justice, collusion with foreign governments, etc. then a strategically populated Court could render a dictator.
And should that occur, we will have witnessed the slowest coup d’ etat in history and the only coup d’ etat in U.S. history.