Welcome to DCW
Upcoming Events9/26/16 - Debate #1
10/4/16 - VP Debate
10/9/16 - Debate #2
10/19/16 - Debate #3
11/8/16 - Election Day
Tag Cloud2008 Democratic National Convention 2012 Democratic National Convention 2012 Republican National Convention 2016 Democratic National Convention 2016 Election 2016 Republican National Convention Abortion Affirmative Action Affordable Care Act Antonin Scalia Ben Carson Bernie Sanders Bob McDonnell Canada Chris Christie civil rights Delegates Delegate Selection Donald Trump First Amendment Hillary Clinton Immigration Iowa Iowa Caucuses Iran Jeb Bush John Kasich John McCain Marco Rubio Martin O'Malley Missouri Nevada New Hampshire Paul Ryan Pennsylvania polling Puerto Rico redistricting Russia same-sex marriage Supreme Court Ted Cruz Title IX United Kingdom Voting Rights
DCW in the News
Clinton Sanders 2842 1865 56 not voting/abstained Trump Cruz 1537 569 1237 to win
Tag Archives: free exercise
The big court story of 2016 was the February death of Justice Antonin Scalia. In an unseemly display, before the body was even buried, the Republican leadership in the Senate announced that they would not confirm any nominee made by President Obama. However, while they did not make any official announcement about other judicial vacancies, the Republicans’ approach to the Supreme Court vacancy was consistent with their approach to the judiciary in general. The outgoing Senate only confirmed 22 judicial nominees over the last two years and did not confirm anybody nominated after September 2015 (with the last confirmation vote occurring before the July 2016 recess). By comparison, in the last two years of the George W. Bush Administration, a Democratic Senate confirmed 67 judicial nominees with the last confirmation vote occurring in September 2008 for a person nominated in July 2008.
At the end of the day, the Democrats lost a golden opportunity to bring an end to four decades of Republican control of the Supreme Court. A win this past November would have led to a solid Democratic majority for the next two or three decades. However, the reality is that for the past forty years, moderately conservative Republicans on the court have formed a barrier to the more extreme positions in the Republican party winning on several issues. As such, controlling the Supreme Court has mattered more to Republican leaners than to Democratic leaners. (Several conservatives argued that Republicans should hold their noses and vote for Trump to keep control of the Supreme Court.) At some point, Democrats may wake up and find a court in which Justice Samuel Alito is the swing vote, but we are not there yet. The Republican stand on the Supreme Court probably made some Republican Senate seats more vulnerable than they would have been, but Democrats failed to explain why control of the Supreme Court matters. Democratic voters may soon suffer for this failure of leadership.