A Mockery Of Justice by Gilbert Schramm

A Mockery of Justice by Gilbert Schramm

The Brett Kavanagh confirmation hearings are a mockery of justice. There are already three powerful strikes against Kavanaugh.

First, though Roe v Wade is established law, Kavanaugh’s previous rulings and writings have expressed his desire to overturn it. In other words, he would be a rightwing judicial activist.

Second, for someone aspiring to be a lifelong member of the highest court in the land, the ability to simply be honest should be a very low bar.  Kavanaugh was clearly less than honest in previous testimony to Congress during hearings for his earlier appointment to a federal court.

Third (and most damning), after participating vigorously in the attempted impeachment of President Clinton, Kavanaugh’s later opinions suggest that he believes a sitting president should be essentially above the law. This is a hypocritical reversal of his earlier position. It reveals a double standard that is clearly driven by his rightwing ideology.

A fourth strike was the Trump administration’s tactic of refusing documents to the committee, dumping some at the last minute and claiming (while not properly asserting) “executive privilege.” GOP Senator Grassley talked about transparency while repeatedly violating traditional senate procedure, just as McConnel had done in paving the way for Neil Gorsuch. Overall, senators have been “allowed” access to only about 10% of Kavanaugh’s public record.

So much for transparency under the GOP.  

The hypocrisy is no surprise, yet this confirmation takes place in the crucial context of the Mueller investigation.

Trump is obviously using his executive power to pack the supreme court- a last ditch defense against the serious criminal charges that have engulfed his campaign, his lawyers and closest aides, and which seem to be heading directly his way.

In this regard it seems that the notion of the “fruit of the poisoned tree” should apply. The evidence, and a wave of guilty pleas, plea deals, and indictments strongly suggest that Trump was elected with the benefit of illegal help from Russia, illegal campaign contributions, dirty tricks, etc. That makes not only the Bett Kavanagh nomination, but also the Neil Gorsuch nomination, “fruit of a poisoned tree.”

People who care about their country should not be naïve: Trump is handpicking a judge for a permanent place on the supreme court because that judge has expressed the belief that a sitting president is above the law. Trump (already an unindicted co-conspirator) is appointing a judge who may well be the deciding voice in enforcing justice on his own criminal activities.

So as likely as Kavanaugh is to overturn Roe v Wade, as important as that is to women across the nation, it is really not the main issue here. The issue is that Trump is picking a judge who will decide his own fate. That is a straight road to dictatorship.

The nominee is demonstrably outside the mainstream of legal opinion. As an appeals court judge Kavanaugh has ruled against the public interest 87% of the time on rulings regarding the environment, labor and consumer rights. The real problem is the nominator- a person who has already disgraced his office in countless ways.

In 2016, as Trump seemingly headed for electoral defeat, he suggested he might not abide by the results of the election. He said the system was rigged. Then, with his surprising win, he began to really rig the system. He already has co-opted the GOP House and Senate. Though he ran on a “law and order” platform, he has regularly attacked the key institutions of law in this nation- the DOJ, the FBI, The CIA, the intelligence services, the courts, and above all, the free media. By packing the Supreme Court with people who owe him, he hopes to keep his grip on power.

Trump is rigging the system in broad daylight. Kavanaugh should be rejected on his record, on the tainted process, and because he will probably rule on Trump’s criminality. It would be nice if people started to stand up to this abuse of power. Above all, Americans should join in repudiating Trump’s GOP across the board in the November elections.