Ultra-Conservative Brett Kavanaugh will drag the Supreme Court to the intolerant rightby Diane Roberts / September 6, 2018 / Leave a comment
Barring the revelation that he secretly donated to the Clinton campaign, Brett Kavanaugh will soon be confirmed as an associate justice of the United States Supreme Court, dragging it even further to the intolerant right. Kavanaugh is an ultra-conservative, and there has been speculation that he could rule in favor of overturning women’s reproductive rights, won in the famous Roe v. Wade case of 1973, overturning marriage equality, lifting restrictions (such as they are) on campaign donations by corporations and plutocrats, and sweeping away environmental protections, affirmative action, and the tattered remains of the social safety net. There is fear that once on the bench, he may also vote to immunise Donald Trump from prosecution.
Ultra-right wing, Trumpist politics are not shared by most Americans. A majority do not want to see abortion outlawed, nor do they approve of the way our politics are driven by corporate money. Most Americans worry about clean air and clean water: a recent Gallup Poll shows that 62 per cent want the government to do something about climate change—the highest ever indication of concern. Americans want affordable heathcare—with or without Obama’s name attached to it; they’re not sure most Mexican immigrants are rapists and murderers; and, in increasing numbers, they think the current occupant of the White House has probably done some pretty unsavory, possibly criminal, things.
According to the national myth, America’s high court is supposed to interpret the law from on high, immune from the quotidian passions of society. And perhaps some Americans still cherish the fantasy that the Supreme Court is above politics. If that was ever true (which is debatable) it certainly isn’t now.
Watching the Senate confirmation hearings of Trump’s second Supreme Court pick should forever kill off the image of nine black-robed philosophers soberly and objectively examining the warp and weft of the law with Olympian detachment. Dozens of protestors have been arrested by the capitol police. The hearings began with Democratic senators loudly demanding that they be adjourned and postponed. Lest that seem a petty parliamentary manoeuvre, don’t forget that Republicans have denied Democrats access to 100,000 documents dating from the time Kavanaugh worked in the George W Bush White House. Kavanaugh claims he was just a low-level paper-pusher who only found out about nasty practices such as extraordinary rendition and torture when he read it in…