Mitch McConnell finally has his say about Ketanji Brown Jackson

On my personal Facebook page, the leftists I know are thrilled by Ketanji Brown Jackson.  They like everything about her: her skin color; her alleged status as a woman (since she's not a biologist, we can't be sure); her Ivy League academic credentials; and her stands on race, criminal justice for perverts, and...well, they don't really know.  After all, they feel that it was incredibly rude to ask her questions about her record.  Her résumé is good — end of story.  But the inscrutable tortoise of the Republican Party, Sen. Mitch McConnell, the Senate minority leader, does not like Jackson and has now stated that he will not vote for her.  Perhaps this will be a turning point in Republican politics.

Anony Mee wrote a great overview about why Jackson is such a dreadful candidate for the Supreme Court.  Tucker Carlson also did a bang-up job targeting her mediocrity and at least some of the terrible ideas for which she stands.

But we've known for decades now that if you even whisper the word "racist" in a Republican's presence, he will instantly crumple to the floor in a fetal position and promise fealty to whatever vote the Democrats are demanding.  The mere fact that Jackson is Black seemed to indicate that Republicans would fall in line, having forgotten all of the lessons from the Kavanaugh hearing (and, before that, the Thomas and Bork hearings).

Things may be different this time, though, whether because Republicans have developed a backbone (doubtful) or because the polling for Democrats is really bad.  Regardless of the reason, Mitch McConnell let fellow Republicans know where he stands — and it's not behind Jackson:

Briefly, McConnell is unimpressed by a candidate for the United States Supreme Court who refused to give straight answers, refuses to denounce court-packing while hinting that she likes the idea, and strongly supports judicial activism.  Perhaps McConnell also didn't think America is ready for a Supreme Court justice who doesn't know what makes her a female (and, remember, her sex is one of the two reasons Biden selected her), thinks child pornographers should get lighter sentences because they can get so much stuff off the internet nowadays, and sees as her guiding lights race-hustlers who think America is irredeemably evil and that the Constitution is a defective and racist document.  Perhaps McConnell got hold of polling data and constituent letters showing that many Americans feel the same.

Image: Mitch McConnell (edited).  YouTube screen grab.

At RedState, Nick Arama believes (as I do) that McConnell's openly stated position will lead the way for other Republicans on the Senate Judiciary Committee to vote her down.  Ted Cruz (R-Texas) is already a clear no, and so is the usually pliable Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), who wanted Michelle Childs, a South Carolina nonentity, as opposed to Jackson, a D.C. nonentity.  Ben Sasse (R-Neb.) and Thom Tillis (R-N.C.) are still question marks, but, again, if they hang together with McConnell, making a tie in the committee, the only way for Democrats to get the vote to the floor is a procedural vote.

Once on the floor, the usual question marks are Senators Murkowski, Collins, and Romney.  The first two are squishes, while Romney is another person whom Trump drove mad.  Like so many NeverTrumps, whatever conservative principles he has are constantly at war with his desire to do anything he can to ensure that Trump never rises again...including siding with Democrats on matters that might affect a future Trump candidacy.  It doesn't seem to occur to Romney that whether Trump runs again is a matter for Trump and the voters, not for Mitt Romney and the Democrats.

On the whole, though, I find McConnell's stand heartening (and regular readers know I blow hot and cold as to McConnell).  He is essentially saying he will not allow fear of being called racist to prevent him from making principled decisions.  If he can break the power that word has over Republicans, we may finally enter a new political era, one characterized by actual courage from conservatives in Congress.

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