Premature Rejectulation

Valued Readers (hi mom!),

It is with sadness I must inform you that Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia has died unexpectedly, following a day of hunting quail. Dick Cheney is still on the lam. 

I am sure that the laudable Justice Scalia’s death left you, as it did me, bereft of joy for many days. As indicated by Geneva Convention Article 11b, I have waited the appropriate two months before making jokes about the death of a national figure (coming June 21st: “Purple Rain Floods: The story of how one music legend literally drowned in pussy”).

But that’s more than I can say for users of Twitter, the popular social media platform designed for the public to say what’s on its mind and for government officials to let the occasional dicture slip out (it’s a picture with a D in it). On the day of Scalia’s death, some tweeters, like Alfie Kohn, quoted Mark Twain:

Others, less cordial than Alfie Kohn, did not hold back their contempt for the late Scalia and his judicial ideology. You wouldn’t believe how many Twitter users apparently know law better than the late justice, who only narrowly squeaked onto the Supreme Court in a 98-0 senate vote. You’d think Obama would have nominated one of these 140-character jurists, though it would have mattered little, as the Republican response was preordained.

Within hours of Scalia’s passing, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell sounded the Conch of Absolutely Not (it sounds like a crescendoing, “NoooooooOOOOOOOO”), prompting all 54 Senate Republicans to rapidly scurry into the Obstruction Lair. He shortly after released this statement, showing that, much like Benjamin Button, Republicans look like old white guys but are actually just children:

No nominee for the Supreme Court will be considered unless Obama makes airplane noises and says ‘here comes the Supreme Court justice!’ We’re not willing to negotiate on this. We also want water gun control decreased, so we can protect ourselves at summer camp, and we want the Capitol Hill lunch program amended to reflect that orange soda is a fruit.

McConnell’s suggestion to go over a year with no appointment seems like a long time, considering that the longest a nomination has taken thus far is 125 days. But if anyone knows that slow and steady wins the race, it’s a man that looks exactly like a tortoise.

Mitch McConnell, left?, and a lookalike

McConnell’s just looking out for the justices. They’re clearly overworked, which is why RBG fell asleep at the 2015 State of the Union. With Scalia’s death leaving the court ideologically split, they can simply call every case a tie and take a much-needed vacation for the next year or so. Just flip around those robes and boom, now they’re wearing snuggies, ready to spend 14 hours per day watching Judge Judy. This will help the vetting process too — with Republicans holding out for an appointment by Donald Trump, she’ll be Justice Judy soon enough.

Where does this leave us? Well, after McConnell’s premature rejectulation, Obama tried toglfam5rxjeqrm1tztmim.jpg

give him an offer he couldn’t refuse: Merrick Garland, a 19-year veteran of the nation’s second highest court who was dubbed by one Atlantic writer “a bipartisan gift to Republicans in a divided age.” This was a polite choice for many reasons, not least of which being that, unlike Obama’s last two appointments, Garland wouldn’t stick out like a sore thumb in a room full of Republican senators. I’m convinced if he just walked around the Republican chambers, he could take part in a good few votes before anyone even caught on. And when they asked his name, he’d be like, “Merrick Garland,” and they’d be like, “I don’t remember meeting this one, but anyone named Merrick Garland is probably a senator, right?”

And yet, despite putting forth an olive branch candidate, Obama’s appointment has been blocked. As much as Garland brings to the table, a few obstacles loom too large to overcome:

  • He was nominated by Barack Obama.
  • In a 2013 opinion, Garland said “Don’t we have to defer to the agency? We’re not scientists. They are.” This implies that he might “defer” to “scientists” who believe in “global warming” and oppose “drilling” into “dolphins” for “oil.”
  • He was nominated by Barack Obama.
  • It takes more muscles to frown than to smile, and Republican senators are trying to get as ripped as House Speaker Paul Ryan.
  • As Ted Cruz opined, this election should be “a referendum on the Supreme Court,” so We the People can choose which justice we want to ban the practice of Islam.
  • “There are those who contend that it does not benefit [Merrick Garland] to get [him] into the [Supreme Court] where [he does] not do well, as opposed to having [him] go to a less-advanced [court], a slower-track [court] where [he will] do well.”
  • He was nominated by Barack Obama.
  • They want the GOP to go out with a bang.
  • There’s a chance that a Republican will win the election — with seven months until Super Tuesday, there’s ample time for Hillary to get hit by a meteor or something.
  • He was nominated by Barack Obama.

In the midst of this divisive election cycle, there was perhaps no nominee of which Republicans would have approved. Unless, that is, Obama got Hillary out of the race by nominating her. In which case, Republicans would collectively go:

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