(NationalSentinel) Remember when majority Republicans in the Senate refused even to hold confirmation hearings and a vote on President Obama’s pick to replace Justice Antonin Scalia after he died suddenly last year? Democrats (and Obama) flipped out and held staged events imploring Republicans to “Do Your Job” and allow hearings on U.S. District Court Judge Merrick Garland, whom some worried Obama would appoint suddenly during the five minutes when the Senate was in recess as the 115th Congress prepared to be sworn in.
Now that Democrats lost the White House to GOP nominee Donald J. Trump, they’re singing a different tune. And you just knew it would happen.
New Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer of New York has pledged to block any Trump Supreme Court nominee, hypocritically claiming that a President Trump should not get the same courtesy he demanded President Obama receive for his pick.
“It’s hard for me to imagine a nominee that Donald Trump would choose that would get Republican support that we could support,” Schumer said in an interview Tuesday night on MSNBC’s “The Rachel Maddow Show.”
As the New York Post noted further:
For Schumer, it’s about retribution. The Republican-controlled Senate failed even to vote on President Obama’s last nomination to the highest court, Merrick Garland, who was put up for the job after the sudden death of Justice Antonin Scalia.
Republicans instead made the Supreme Court a campaign issue, saying whoever was elected president would get to nominate Scalia’s replacement.
The Democratic Senate leader told host Maddow that Republicans got away with not voting on Obama’s nominee, but that “the consequences will be down the road.”
But in June, Schumer sang a different tune, blasting Republicans for not doing their duty and for creating “chaos.”
“Senate Republicans need to do their job and give Judge Garland the hearing and vote he deserves because the American people deserve a fully functioning court,” said Schumer in a June 8, 2016, press release.
What Schumer, the Left-wing media establishment and the Obama White House didn’t want to admit is that constitutionally speaking, the Senate must give “advice and consent” to presidential judicial appointments. But there is nothing in Article II, Sect. 2, Clause 2 of the Constitution that requires the Senate to act or to rubber stamp a president’s picks.
Furthermore, Schumer appears to be counting on the fact that current Senate rules call for a 60-vote majority in approving justices. But that is merely a Senate rule, not a constitutional requirement. And the precedent for breaking it was set by none other than outgoing Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid when, in 2013 he invoked a so-called “nuclear option,” allowing simple [Democratic] majorities to approve Obama nominees.
The reason? The Washington Post, partisan as ever, ‘explained’ the ‘rationale’:
The immediate rationale for the move was to allow the confirmation of three picks by President Obama to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit — the most recent examples of what Democrats have long considered unreasonably partisan obstruction by Republicans.
What is an opposition party supposed to do if not “oppose” the other party? And besides, again, the Senate is not required to rubber-stamp a president’s picks.
Still, Reid set the precedent, and now that it’s Democrats threatening “unreasonably partisan obstruction,” the country would be well-served if Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell decided to use the Democrats’ own procedural tricks against them and eliminate the 60-vote rule for Supreme Court nominees.