I’m writing to provide a perspective on the furor over the nomination of Amy Coney Barrett. I am not here to argue the merits of Ms. Barrett, but to address the process and implications.
By denying to consider President Obama’s nominee, Merrick Garland, nine months before the 2016 election and now rushing to confirm Ms. Barrett weeks before the 2020 election, the Republican party has established the precedent that a justice can only be nominated and confirmed when the presidency and the Senate majority are held by the same party. I would be happy if someone could point out if the Constitution has anything to say about this for or against.
In response to the hypocrisy and blatant power mongering, the Democrats are doubling down by threatening to pack the court if they ever got control of White House and Senate. Again, there is nothing in the Constitution that precludes this. It does however, shed light on why the founding fathers were not keen on political parties. The Republicans, for all their piety about letting the people choose, acted against the interests of the Constitution when they denied Merrick Garland a fair hearing in 2016. They are compounding their sin in 2020 and the Democrats are making it worse. If both parties are not willing to put the Constitution and the rule of law that it represents ahead of any particular political issue, our democracy is at an end.
Jim DeFelice, Richmond Hill