GUEST COLUMN: When it comes to the Supreme Court, we have had enough “Borking”
For many Hoosiers such as myself, the top concern for the 2016 elections was who would ultimately fill the vacancy on the Supreme Court left by the untimely death of Justice Antonin Scalia. Would it be a justice who saw our constitution as a fluid document, adapting with each generation that came and went, changing with each new trend lending an unstable forecast for America’s future? Or would a new justice have faith in what the Founding Fathers gave this nation, a constitution that in the words of Justice Scalia “establishes a structure that is likely to preserve, against the ineradicable human lust for power”?
During the campaign, then candidate Donald Trump had presented a list of those judges to the voters who he would consider appointing to fill Scalia’s seat if he were elected. Most of those on the list were generally considered constructionists. And true to his word, he nominated Neil Gorsuch and the Senate confirmed him, although forty-three Democrats and two independents voted against Gorsuch.
Only three Democrats voted for Gorsuch, one of which was our own Senator Joe Donnelly.
But now, with the retirement of Anthony Kennedy from the court, and the selection of Brett Kavanaugh to fill the vacancy, the Senate Judicial Committee, primarily the Democratic members along with their Republican sidekick, Jeff Flake has turned the process into a “circus”. And the only thing absolutely transparent about their intentions is to delay the hearings indefinitely in hopes that they will take over the Senate after the November elections, enabling them to place another activist judge on the court. Another week, following other delays was added on in order to pacify moderate Republican senators and those Dems on the committee who have long ago declared that they would never vote for Judge Kavanaugh.
Forget that the Democrats were simply asking for a more extensive background check regarding Kavanaugh’s alleged sexual acts committed against Dr. Christine Balsey-Ford, for which the known evidence supports Kavanaugh. Most of us in the heartland know that the Democrats were only throwing up another smokescreen in order to drag this out, further wrecking an innocent man and his family. Even now, Minnesota Democratic Sen. Amy Klobuchar, who sits on the Judiciary Committee, is now declaring that Kavanaugh’s drinking in high school and college might be considered a disqualifying factor. And now Mazie “men need to shut-up” Hirono (D-Hawaii) is accusing the Trump administration of micromanaging the FBI investigation.
But forget that Senator Donnelly voted for Gorsuch. That was yesterday. Donnelly has declared that he cannot vote for Brett Kavanaugh. In his statement he said “As I have made clear before, sexual assault has no place in our society. When it does occur, we should listen to the survivors and work to assure it never happens again.” Who can disagree with that? Except assuming a person is guilty when the evidence just isn’t there has no place in our society either, wouldn’t you agree Joe? Just ask the Duke University lacrosse players.
In his current campaign commercials, Donnelly shows himself riding around rural Indiana, mixing it up with “hard-working” Hoosiers, and empathizing with residents who have suffered losses in their lives. But then his commercials show him borrowing a line that was oft used by former President Barack Obama, usually when he was lecturing those of us who cling to our religion. Donnelly looks directly into the camera and says “That’s not who we are.” Apparently who we are and who he is are not the same, especially considering when he voted against President Trump’s tax reform bill. Probably not a wise choice considering that unemployment has reached an all-time low of 3.4 percent.
For Nancy Pelosi to say that even if Kavanaugh gets a clear FBI background check, impeachment of the man will be considered. For every Democrat on the committee to avow they would not consider him even before the hearings began, and for Diana Feinstein to hold on to the letter written by Dr. Ford until the very last minute, should make clear the intentions of the Democrats. That’s the side Joe Donnelly has pledged his allegiance to.
When it comes to the Supreme Court, we have had enough “Borking”, Kavanaugh deserves his place. It’s time for Joe to go.