[COMMENTARY] Obama Slams McConnell for Reversal on SCOTUS Replacement

The announcement of Ruth Bader Ginsburg‘s death on Friday sent shockwaves through the country and around the world. A champion for women’s’ issues and voting rights, Ginsburg was a strong liberal voice and a feminist icon. Tributes began immediately on social media, with most lamenting her loss at such a critical moment in history.

So of course the Republicans couldn’t wait a respectable amount of time before beginning the campaign to replace her with a conservative justice, a mere 45 days before the Presidential election. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell tweeted a statement barely an hour after Ginsburg’s death was announced.

Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

McConnell praises Ginsburg but then ends his weak eulogy with a justification and a devastating promise.


Several members of the GOP tweeted also basic condolences so they could get to the real red meat fast. Ted Cruz appeared on Fox News and immediately began lobbying for the seat that Donald Trump had dangled in front of him in the wake of the Woodward Tapes revealing Trump’s true feelings about both Cruz and Marco Rubio. Only afterwards did Cruz tweet about the late Supreme Court Justice. Cruz’s party mate Doug Collins was getting dragged by Twitter well into Saturday after he tweeted his condolences not to Ginsburg, but to the “30 million innocent babies that have been murdered” during Ginsburg’s SCOTUS tenure.

Twitter went into overdrive to remind everyone in the Republican party about their obstruction over Barack Obama’s Supreme Court nominee, Merrick Garland, and their hypocrisy over trying to push their nominee through with less than 45 days to go until the election. Obama felt strongly enough about the issue to release a statement of his own late Friday night to counter that of McConnell’s.

President Barack Obama hugs Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 20, 2015, before giving his State of the Union address before a joint session of Congress. (AP Photo/Mandel Ngan, Pool)

“Four and a half years ago, when Republicans refused to hold a hearing or an up-or-down vote on Merrick Garland, they invented the principle that the Senate shouldn’t fill an open seat on the Supreme Court before a new president was sworn in,” Obama writes. “A basic principle of the law — and of everyday fairness — is that we apply rules with consistency, and not based on what’s convenient or advantageous in the moment,” he said, adding that the legitimacy of American courts and democracy depend on the equal application of this standard.

“As votes are already being cast in this election, Republican Senators are now called to apply that standard,” Obama said.

Only we all know they won’t, even though they told us to hold them accountable.

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