I think everybody has got this issue wrong. They are either focused on who Obama will nominate or how Congress will make sure, the nominee isn’t confirmed. Nobody is thinking about the poor individual who will certainly either (a) Take a beating during the confirmation hearing, before the committee declares the nominee obviously unacceptable or (b) Prepare for a confirmation hearing that wouldn’t take place.
This is a nomination that is dead on arrival. So, I can’t imagine anyone wanting this job. I mean if you’re going through hell, there should be some reward at the end. I don’t see it.
But, it’s not like you can draft someone to be a SC nominee. “Hey you, get dressed, you’re going to the confirmation hearings, and we have bandages ready and an ambulance on stand-by.” Response, “You can’t make me go!”
I guess it is nice to be get called by President Obama, and hear, “You’re my man!” for one of the country’s top position. At least, it used to be an honor.
Of course, we need a highly intelligent and respected judge, who has served on the Federal Appeals Court and is a constitutional expert. The nominee is likely to have argued cases in front of the Supreme Court.
The candidate will immediately be pillared by all Republican candidates. “This nominee will continue to destroy the Constitution, just as the liberals have done in the past”, will be the charge leveled against the justice. The scrutiny of the candidate will go far beyond legal opinions, and include his family, his acquaintances, his financial records and anything else that can be dredged up.
On top of that, any nominee will, if hearings are conducted, be asked questions about cases pending in the courts, which they can’t answer. Any nominee will be accused of stonewalling the committee.
I really love the candor of Robert Gates confirmation hearing. He writes, in his book Duty,
I remember sitting at the witness table listening to this litany of woe and thinking, What the hell am I doing here? I have walked right into the middle of a category-five shitstorm. I was the first of many, many times I would sit at the witness table thinking something very different from what I was saying.
Robert Gates paid $40,000 to a legal form to fill out financial disclose form. Even the slightest error could be blown out of proportion by someone who did not want to vote for him. But, Gates got confirmed. Obama’s nominee won’t. It’s going to be pure theater.
So, who does Obama want to feed to the wolves? Jacqueline Nguyen will be the nominee. She’s just too perfect! She was confirmed to be on the ninth appeals court judge, 91-3.
My second guess, is Sri Srinivasan. Another incredibly smart judge on the DC Court of Appeals.
Sri has really got a bit stronger credentials- as if this mattered. If either accept the nomination, I will still be wondering- why????