Trump is set to nominate the staunch conservative candidate, Amy Coney Barrett as the successor of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. The nomination will drastically alter the ideological composition of the Supreme Court. Republicans are even pushing to pass the confirmation before the Election Day.
White House officials have not disclosed the plan openly fearing that Trump may even change his decision. Barrett is the only candidate to be interviewed by Trump. She pulled the bet among five women candidates including Barbara Lagoa of Florida and Joan Larsen of Michigan.
Who is Amy Coney Barrett?
Amy Coney Barrett is the federal judge who served as a clerk of top brass conservative Justice Antonin Scalia. Barrett is the favourite candidate of conservatives. The Notre Dame graduate is known for her anti-abortion stand. The US is divided on the issue of abortion. The Republican long-standing promise goes against it.
The larger motive of Trump
Trump is making best efforts to pass the confirmation of new nominee through the vote in the full chamber in Senate before elections. Trump has repeatedly asserted that election result may end up in court as keeps flagging concern about mail-in ballot system. He clearly said if the elections are not fair, there may not be “transfer of power at all. There will be a continuum.
With the confirmation of Amy Coney Barret, the divide of strength between conservatives and liberals will stand at 6-3 majority. Barrett will appoint six republicans. There is little doubt with her ideological affiliations. Trump seeks to harness this composition if election results come under controversy. Joseph Biden has discarded Trump’s cry against mail-in ballot as an attempt to distract voters. He said if results go against him, “he will leave.”
Analyst are drawing a similarity between 30 years back similar replacement of Thurgood Marshall by Thomas Clarence. Marshall was a liberal in contrast to the staunch conservative Thomas Clarence.
Political gains from the nomination
Barret’s nomination is also being seen as Trump’s reciprocation to unconditional support he gets from conservatives. The nomination puts end to decade long wait of conservative groups across America. Democrats, on other hand, have very little headroom to react. They are waiting to see how things turn up.
The move will also increase Trump’s credentials among suburban women. A recent poll by NYT showed that Democrats were giving a fight to Republicans in their states of dominance such as Iowa and Georgia. Trump has become widely unpopular among women in many states.
Strong backing from Republicans
Amy Coney Barrett’s nomination is strongly backed by White House chief of staff, Mark Meadows and Senate Majority Leader, Mitch McConnell.
Vice President Mike Pence also came in defence. He said that mere affiliation with People of Praise can not be a ground to drag her in controversy. Mr Pence was referring to Barrett’s catholic affiliations. Her 2017 nomination as a federal court judge was rigorously opposed by senators on similar grounds it is done today. People of Catholic faith across the USA felt offended.
Barrett herself said that “it should not be a surprise that Senate is willing to push a president’s nominee through an election year when they share the same political affiliation.” It is another thing that Republicans senators themselves blocked Obama to fill the vacant seat after the death of conservative Antonin Scalia before 2016 election.
The road ahead
It remains to be seen if Barrett gets a confirmation before the Election Day. Apart from her merit, Ginsburg’s stature will be a major factor in play. It is important to see if Barrett could surpass or even match her credentials.
The responsibility to discharge her duties above political and ideological affiliations lies on Barrett’s shoulder. There had been instances when judges rose to uphold the sanctity of justice system, keeping their ideology at distance.