Political Faceoff: Hold Off

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The unfortunate passing of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia has opened a door for the left which has never been available before – a chance to control the highest court in the land for a generation.

Thus, it comes as no surprise that they’re screaming about the “responsibility of the Senate” to confirm Obama’s chosen nominee.

What is surprising is that the Republican-controlled Senate has finally decided to stand up for itself.

In fact, Democrats are so used to congressional Republicans rolling over, that it’s really quite aggravating for them when Congress uses the powers granted to them by the Constitution for once.

Liberals, however, aren’t only outraged that the Senate won’t hold a hearing, they’re also howling how the Senate must confirm the president’s appointee.

The truth of the matter is this: the Senate majority can and should do anything and everything within its power to protect the Constitution as it was originally intended.

Both of the assertions that the Senate must hold a hearing and must confirm the president’s nominee are rendered false rather simply.

If it were the intention of the framers for the Senate majority to be unable to refuse hearings of some kind, the Constitution would have disallowed it.

Similarly, if it were the intention of the framers that the president’s nominee should always be confirmed, the Constitution would not delegate the power of approval to the Senate.

The authors of the Constitution meticulously debated all the powers that each branch should and should not have and carefully devised the best system to check the power of each branch.

Moreover, they expected that each branch would use every ability not denied them to check the power of the other branches.

The ability of the Senate majority to discern which nominees to approve and which to not even consider is essential in preventing executive control over the judicial branch.

Now, I’d imagine my friend above is extolling the importance and virtue of having a full nine justices.

But what exactly obligates the Supreme Court to have NINE justices? Nothing. Yes, really.

There’s no magical law or constitutional provision that says, “there shall be nine justices.”

The composition of the Supreme Court has ranged widely, frequently, and recently from five to ten justices.

The Supreme Court has had fewer than nine during many crucial rulings.

The current governing law, the Judiciary Act of 1869, requires only a quorum of six. This means that the Senate does not need to hold hearings on any justice at all, even after the election! Sorry.

Constitutional conservatives, including myself, hold originalism as the only way to properly understand the Constitution.

To us, it is not a matter of left versus right, only a question of originalist versus activist.

While originalists seek to understand the Constitution by what its framers intended, activist judges bend the words as they themselves see fit.

These activist judges already control many of the circuit courts which rank below the Supreme Court.

While these courts tend to have a much more direct effect on most citizens’ lives, control of the Supreme Court cements activist rulings and jeopardizes the liberty of the people.

As a result of this danger, the Senate will hopefully stand strong and many conservatives who dislike Trump for other reasons will vote for him on Election Day in the hope he will appoint an originalist.

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