If you missed President Obama’s mic drop in the Rose Garden on the White House lawn this morning, here’s a quick summary: “Hey Congress, I triple dog dare you not to approve this guy!”
Obama’s speech and address about Merrick Garland‘s nomination to the highest bench in the land was laden with strong — almost terse — language about bipartisan politics, a firm stance on the need for constitutional consideration of all U.S. Supreme Court nominees, and a few quotes from conservatives on the bench, all of which are highly respected and almost legendary in judicial circles.
Garland, 63, is easily one of the most decorated people ever considered for a SCOTUS appointment. Currently, he is the chief judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, and has earned a respected reputation for his openness, candor, and moderate views to appease both sides of judicious leaders at the D.C. Circuit, a bench that’s sometimes called “the second most important in the land.”
It’s no secret Republicans have been vociferous in their displeasure of Obama being “permitted” to nominate someone to the bench so close to his riding off into the sunset. That said, this is a fierce PR push and a big, condemnatory finger in the face of the right side of the Senate floor.
First, there was the posturing. Now, the nomination. And then, there’s even a Twitter handle, @SCOTUSnom, to further educate the
Senate American people about the process and the man who is Merrick Garland, full with insight and infographics.
“I simply ask Republicans in the Senate to give him a fair hearing, and then an up or down vote,” Mr. Obama said. “If you don’t, then it will not only be an abdication of the Senate’s constitutional duty, it will indicate a process for nominating and confirming judges that is beyond repair.”
The political crapslinging has already begun with Senate Leader Mitch McConnell bringing up the “Biden Rule” and how this process is not about person but a principle. In other words, he’s taking that dare and risking a huge PR fail.
A guy who is unquestionably qualified, remarkably moderate, and indubitably skilled at understanding the law is about to get a crash course on politics and public relations. Welcome to the circus, Judge.
Now, uh, someone in the POTUS camp needs to teach the guy how to tweet himself.