Opinion: Justice Barrett could now be part of Trump's firewall
October 27, 2020. Summarized by summa-bot.
US President Donald Trump applauds Judge Amy Coney Barrett after she was sworn in as a US Supreme Court Associate Justice during a ceremony on the South Lawn of the White House October 26, 2020, in Washington, DC. (Photo by Brendan Smialowski / AFP) (Photo by BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP via Getty Images)
Frida Ghitis writes that Trump could have held a smaller confirmation ceremony for Justice Amy Coney Barrett. It could have been televised around the country. But he presumably wanted to distill maximum gain from this opportunity.
Only hours earlier, we had learned that Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh, another Trump nominee, had echoed Trump's inflammatory tweets about mail-in votes, raising the specter that Trump's election-year efforts to sow confusion, undermine faith in the election and disenfranchise voters, could ultimately pay off.
This time around, Trump made it clear he wanted to fill the empty court seat before Election Day, presumably because he expects his nominee to side with him if the election ends up being decided by the court.
That resonance to Trump's campaign grandiosity, the partisanship that marked Barrett's appointment and Trump's own statements about the role of the court in the upcoming election, are evidence of the blatant politicization of the Barrett nomination, undercutting the court's credibility.
Monday night became all the more significant because just before the confirmation ceremony, the Supreme Court barred Wisconsin from granting an extension for mail-in ballots arriving after election day, effectively boosting Trump's effort to manipulate the election.
Kavanaugh reinforced Trump's message, writing, " . . . States want to avoid the chaos and suspicions of impropriety that can ensue if thousands of absentee ballots flow in after election day and potentially flip the results of an election. " Justice Elena Kagan shot back in her dissent, that "there are no results to 'flip' until all valid votes are counted," adding that nothing is more suspicious than refusing to count the votes.
There is an ongoing, high-stakes election disinformation campaign, and Trump is trying to enlist the country's highest court.
It was an chance for Trump to remind the Republican faithful that he delivered another Supreme Court justice, with the hope that they will reward him at the polls.
The politically tinged event, which many deemed inappropriate, is a reminder that she has Trump to thank for becoming one of the most powerful people in the country.