Donald Trump Has The Supreme Court Right Where He Wants It
BY: KAYLA PASACRETA
The Supreme Court is the most important judicial branch in the country, and Donald Trump has secured a firm grip on it. Conservatives have recently enjoyed multiple Supreme Court victories, with votes in favor of racial gerrymandering in Texas, sided with Ohio to restrict voting rights for voters who vote inconsistently, with anti-abortion centers, and more recently to uphold Trump's travel ban on mainly Muslim countries. The ban applies to: Iran, North Korea, Syria, Libya, Yemen, Somalia and Venezuela.
It's undeniable that the confirmation of Trump's pick Neil Gorsuch has made a world of difference in securing Conservative victories in the Supreme Court, with debates typically ending in 5-4 rulings with Liberal dissents.
When Barack Obama nominated Merrick Garland to the Supreme Court after the death of Justice Scalia, he did it to secure his legacy and add a liberal-leaning judge to the Supreme Court. However, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell did every thing in his power to prevent Obama from securing another Supreme Court nominee, arguing that he was a lame duck, even with eleven months to go in his presidency. Just an hour after news spread of Scalia's death, McConnell issued a statement saying the vacancy, "should not be filled until we have a new president.” Despite the calls of hundreds of legal scholars insisting that refusing a hearing was unconstitutional, Congressional Republicans continued in their pursuit.
Senate Republicans did the ground work, insisting there be no confirmation hearing until the next President took office in January 2017. Some of the notable Senators instrumental in making sure Garland was not able to have a confirmation hearing include Jeff Sessions (R-AL), Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Ted Cruz (R-TX) and Jeff Flake (R-AZ). In Mitch McConnell's own words, "One of my proudest moments was when I looked Barack Obama in the eye and I said, 'Mr. President, you will not fill the Supreme Court vacancy."
In preventing Garland from being nominated, McConnell paved the way for frequent Conservative Supreme Court victories. The biggest winner of it all? Trump. With a Republican majority in the House, Senate, and Supreme Court, Trump is able to dismiss the opposition from his political foes and pretty easily dictate what becomes law.
The influence of the Supreme Court is real. The stakes of Supreme Court rulings during the Trump Administration are especially high. Trump's successful nomination of Neil Gorsuch has secured another Conservative Supreme Court judge for decades to come (Gorsuch is only 50 years old).
When people say elections matter, believe them.