Wednesday, 18 July, 2018

Questions about Kavanaugh temper enthusiasm for Trump pick

Dursun Aydemir  Anadolu Agency  Getty ImagesNATO's logo is seen at the NATO's new headquarters in Brussels Belgium Dursun Aydemir Anadolu Agency Getty ImagesNATO's logo is seen at the NATO's new headquarters in Brussels Belgium
Theresa Hayes | 12 July, 2018, 06:37

Judge Brett Kavanaugh, nominated by President Donald Trump Monday night to the U.S. Supreme Court, has played a pivotal role in some of Florida's most contentious moments, from Elian González to the Bush vs. Gore presidential election.

This scenario is bad for those vulnerable Senate Democrats, who must either vote against the nominee in states where voters are likely to view Kavanaugh and Trump favorably or risk alienating their Democratic supporters by playing a direct role in the confirmation of a judge that many rank-and-file Democrats find wholly unacceptable.

If confirmed by the Senate, he would replace Justice Kennedy, who served on the bench for 30 years and was appointed to the position by President Ronald Reagan. "As recently as last year, he disregarded supreme court precedent and opposed the healthcare rights of a vulnerable young woman", in reference to the case of the 17-year-old undocumented immigrant.

Democrats in red states facing re-election in November face a "nightmare" over the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court - ultimately coming up against "a lose-lose situation", pollster Doug Schoen said Wednesday. He is on record as saying that sitting presidents shouldn't face civil or criminal charges - and they should have the ability to dismiss special counsels.

He pointed to nominees who have gone through his panel - such as EPA chemical safety pick Michael Dourson and White House Council on Environmental Quality nominee Kathleen Hartnett White - who never made it through the full Senate.

Ironically, those Senate gains would make it easier to confirm a very conservative Trump nominee after the midterms.

Calls to put party politics aside are likely to go unheard in Washington.

Leaving the Russian Federation issue aside, Covington predicted that a Justice Kavanaugh would be more solidly conservative than Justice Kennedy, putting Chief Justice John Roberts in the position of the swing vote.

In addition to Trump's trio of appointees, the school boasts other famous alumni, including former Democratic Rep. John Dingell, retiring GOP Rep. Manchin is a top target for conservative judicial groups, who have vowed to spend millions to try to pressure him and the other Democrats on this list to support Kavanaugh.

"If this judge is confirmed, the Supreme Court would tell women that they aren't allowed to make their own decisions with their doctors about their own health".

Democrats hope public support for healthcare will help them repeat that victory by building opposition to Kavanaugh, a conservative federal appeals court judge and Trump's second nominee to the high court.

Before that, Kavanaugh clerked with Kozinski at the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, which includes the nine western states, including California and Washington.

But Democrats say nothing short of Roe v. Wade is on the line and have cast Kavanaugh as a far-right judge who threatens women's reproductive rights.

He has ruled on hundreds of cases and contributed to prosecutor Kenneth Starr's report into president Bill Clinton's affair with White House intern Monica Lewinsky, which outlined grounds for Clinton's impeachment. And, he has been part of some highly disputed legal cases.

Jones said Sunday, before the nominee was revealed as Brett Kavanaugh, that he could vote either way.

The Workmen's Circle, a progressive Jewish organization with roots in the labor movement, said Kavanaugh's nomination represents the latest salvo in a "war against the working people of this country". Special counsel Robert Mueller, of course, is now investigating potential collusion between Russian Federation and the Trump campaign during the 2016 election.

Trump "chose the candidate who he thought would best protect him from the Mueller investigation", Schumer said, adding that Kavanaugh has written that a president should not be investigated and could choose not to follow the law if he deemed it unconstitutional.