How Garland Gets Confirmed Before the Election

I haven’t checked the transcripts or anything, but I’m pretty sure President Obama’s pending Supreme Court nominee, Merrick Garland, was never mentioned at this week’s Democratic National Convention. Garland’s nomination has now been pending 135 days—longer than any Supreme Court nomination in history. And this is due to all-out, unprecedented obstruction by the Republicans. So it’s a little odd that the Democrats never mentioned Garland during their convention, and never used the Republicans’ obstructionism as a punching bag. Why wouldn’t they use the DNC stage to hit the Republicans hard on this?

I have a theory. Some people might say the Supreme Court just isn’t that important to Democratic voters; some might say too much talk about Garland or the Court would’ve reminded Republican-leaning voters who don’t want to vote for Trump of the only defensible reason to do so. But I think there might be something else going on—something more subtle and strategic.

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SCOTUS Recusals & Notorious RBG

There’s a lot of talk right now about Justice Ginsburg’s recent comments about Trump and Heller, and whether they might require her to recuse herself from certain future cases. See, e.g., here and here. I don’t think so (see reasons below). But I thought I’d use this opportunity to make a prediction and to call attention to a new report saying the justices recused themselves 180 times this last term. That’s a lot of recusals.

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