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2016? Think SCOTUS

The presidential election is 17 months away and is clearly shaping up as a real donnybrook. It’s going to be Hillary Clinton against one of the more “moderate” Republicans — though that label doesn’t mean what it used to. If any GOP hopeful were to campaign on the platform of a Nixon or Ford he/she wouldn’t stand a chance. Heck, even Saint Ronald would have to move rightward to be acceptable these days.

But that’s not the point. The serious point is that many of my progressive friends are annoyed with Hillary. They are getting excited over Bernie. Since Elizabeth Warren has finally gotten her message across that she is not a candidate they’ve started swarming around Sanders.

I would love to see a President Sanders at the end of next year. But it’s not going to happen. Hill will be the nominee and she should win handily. The only thing that could keep her from a landslide is either some unforseen disaster (unlikely) or a self-inflicted (and more likely) one, the one where many progressives are so annoyed with Clinton that they stay home or write in “Sanders” or “Warren.”

If anyone is thinking along there lines stop and consider the damage, the historical, long-lasting and irremediable damage done by the appointment of Alito and Roberts to the Supreme Court. Think who’d be sitting on the bench if Gore had won (yeah, I know, he did win ….).

Think Citizens United, think the gutting of the Civil Rights Act or go here for a full analysis of the drift of the Court over the last 80 years.

Bader-Ginsburg is 82, Scalia is 79, Kennedy 78, Breyer 76. It is likely that the next president will get to appoint up to four justices.

Frankly, I’m sufficiently satisfied with Hillary’s stance on most issues even if she waffles a bit on Wall Street and has a tad too much muscle in her foreign affairs. But just the thought of a Jeb Bush or Scott Walker making four appointments to the SCOTUS is terrifying.

This is not a time for Idealism. It is one for Pragmatism.

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