Amy Coney Barrett inspired enemies to hug one another. Isn’t this a good thing?
She was too nice. And smart. And humble. And professional. And sharp. And unimpeachable.
I’m not talking about Hillary Clinton, and certainly not referring to Nancy Pelosi, Kamala Harris, Maxine Waters, Elizabeth “Pocahontas” Warren, Amy Klobuchar, Mazie Hirono, Alexandria Ocasio Cortez, Ilhan Omar, Gretchen Whitmer or (insert Democrat female’s name here) either. No, I’m speaking of Judge Amy Coney Barrett, the nominee who is in line to once again bring the high court up to its full nine-justice membership. The Senate Judiciary Committee is scheduled to vote on Barrett’s nomination tomorrow, clearing the way for a full upper chamber yea or nay tally next week. Only a fool would bet against Barrett being confirmed.
By this time in the process, Democrats and the media are usually in full panic mode, proverbially ripping the hair from their itchy scalps trying to fashion some means to stall the inevitable. Two years ago, distinguished judge Brett Kavanaugh was on the doorstep of being passed to the next level when all heck broke loose concerning an allegation that he’d been improper with a teen girl at a party in the 1980’s. Not a single person on God’s green earth could corroborate the story, yet the senate minority insisted on turning the fantastic slander into a spectacle of historic proportions.
It’s still early (at least by Democrat standards), but it doesn’t appear that the farcical theatrics will be repeated with Barrett. In fact, the lead Democrat and Republican on the Judiciary committee shared a lengthy embrace at the conclusion of the several-day questioning session last week. Alex Swoyer reported at The Washington Times, “Liberal groups erupted in anger after Sen. Dianne Feinstein praised the way Republicans ran last week’s confirmation hearing for Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett and demanded that the senator be ousted as Democrats’ top member on the Judiciary Committee.
“Ms. Feinstein wasn’t the only Democrat to compliment Sen. Lindsey Graham, South Carolina Republican and committee chairman, but when she embraced him at the end of four days of hearings, it sent shock waves through the activist network that had spent weeks trying to gin up opposition to President Trump’s high court nominee.
“Organizations such as NARAL Pro-Choice America and the feminist UltraViolet said Ms. Feinstein damaged those chances.”
The aforementioned liberal groups aren’t exactly renowned for their moderation in any sense of the word, but this is absurd even for them. To imply that nonpartisan comity between colleagues in an elected body would jeopardize efforts to do anything in the political sense is flat wrong. It used to be that people could disagree on issues yet still be civil to each other. Even in times of intense division, it’s rare that tempers flare and blows (verbal or otherwise) are exchanged.
A similar scene to Feinstein’s and Graham’s is repeated in churches all across the country every Sunday, where you shake hands or embrace people (at least in the pre-Chinese Communist Party virus days) and wish them “Peace be with you”, even if they’re unlike you in every way, shape or form.
Both political sides praised the fairness and professionalism of last week’s Barrett hearings, which basically passed from day-to-day without much fanfare or controversy. Judge Amy was simply too prepared and composed to stir up enthusiastic opposition. Years from now, historians might look back on her as the perfect nominee. Even the left-leaning American Bar Association rated her “well qualified” to be a justice. The witnesses Democrats brought forward to oppose her didn’t talk about Barrett’s lack of character bona fides or qualifications; they concentrated on the political ramifications of her being on the Court in place of the departed Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Since Republicans hold the numbers, it really didn’t matter.
I didn’t watch all the hearings but I speculate having Barrett in the committee room made everyone want to hug each other, as if to say “I’m sorry for the way the Kavanaugh thing got so out of control.” Committee member and Democrat VP nominee Kamala Harris was notably absent (except “virtually”), which might explain why everything went along so swimmingly. The woman makes everyone want to throw things whenever she’s present.
At any rate, loony lefties are mad at Feinstein now for being human. Instead of acting like a standard liberal robot who would browbeat Mother Theresa if she were seated in the witness chair, the California senator said nice things about Graham and decided to let the voters make up their own minds about the merits of Barrett’s nomination. Some Golden State Democrats tried to oust the longtime pol two years ago when she ran for reelection, considering her too “moderate” for the leftward lurch of the state.
But it begs the question: why the hug?
Little displays of friendship can mean a lot. Seeing Feinstein and Graham’s moment, you harken back to eight years ago when then New Jersey Republican Governor Chris Christie “hugged” Barack Obama a few days before the election. Christie denies there was any such friendly gesture, but photos and the media’s spin play it out. The gratitude on Christie’s face alone portrayed a feeling of warmth towards Obama.
When exit polls subsequently revealed how last-minute deciders factored in Obama’s response to Hurricane Sandy, the “hug” could’ve sealed the deal for a lot of people. As they always are, the 2012 campaign was nasty (though tame by 2016’s and 2020’s standards). If a picture is worth a thousand words, the Christie/Obama embrace was the equivalent of millions of votes. The lowest of the low-information voters probably couldn’t recite the differences in party platforms but they sure saw the incumbent as a good guy to walk a beach with (as Christie did).
Here’s thinking Feinstein and Graham’s cuddle won’t have the same effect. First off, not nearly as many people saw it. Second, most voters couldn’t care less about what senators do, figuring they’re all members of the same elite club who probably pal around together after hours anyway. Weren’t Joe Biden and John McCain great friends? Third, very, very few know or care what the leftist interest groups think. And lastly, Barrett herself is so completely unobjectionable that she won’t serve as the campaign issue Democrats hoped she would be.
Democrats learned their lesson from Kavanaugh. Or maybe not.
One is tempted to give Democrats credit for the way they conducted themselves during Barrett’s hearings. Sure, they basically withheld the weapons that could’ve stirred up the hornet’s nest, a wave of media scorn that’s ruined countless lives regardless of truth or veracity. They largely left Barrett’s Catholic faith alone, instead preferring to attack her reported political leanings and how her personal views could impact the Court’s direction on healthcare -- and determining an election winner.
It was a smart political move, wasn’t it? Liberals apparently recognized that they couldn’t gain much by smearing a mother of seven children (including two adopted Haitian children and a son with Down Syndrome) who is the epitome of decorum, dignity and manners. Barrett comes across as everyone’s mom, aunt or sister, the one who organizes family gatherings and is trusted with breaking bits of bad news to Grandma because she’s widely regarded as everyone’s favorite person who no one would dream of getting upset with.
Democrats are smart, aren’t they? They were simply behaving themselves because they were apologetic for the way Kavanaugh was treated, right? Guilt is a powerful motivator. Lindsey Graham himself yelled at them back then, saying “I hope y’all never get power.” Then November, 2018 came around and voters not only failed to reward the Democrats for their outlandish behavior, they increased the size of the GOP senate majority.
As a result, in their internal caucus strategy meetings, Democrats surely must’ve agreed to leave Barrett alone. This close to the national election, the last thing liberals wanted was to be viewed as boorish, petty and mean, the very qualities they falsely ascribe to President Trump. So, perhaps senators were given the greenlight to go on and on about Obamacare and to bring blown-up photos of supposed health care sufferers, but Barrett herself was off limits.
Next, they wouldn’t dare savage Barrett like they did to Kavanaugh because she’s a woman. Joe Biden’s election chances hinge on Democrats maintaining the suburban white women’s vote -- the legendary soccer moms who reportedly are turned off by Trump’s personality and stimulated by promises of free federal stuff. Therefore, to chew up and spit out the outwardly docile Judge Amy wouldn’t look good to this crucial constituency. These women want healthcare, dang it, not another four years of Donald Trump!
But the biggest reason why Democrats left Barrett alone was the hopelessness of stopping her confirmation. In 2018, Democrats saw an opportunity to defeat Kavanaugh because of the presence of a few RINO senators who might be swayed to their side. First and most prominently was former Arizona Sen. Jeff Flake, who was so spineless and timid that he probably could bend over backwards like a cartoon Gumby.
Who will ever forget the “elevator” scene that unfolded after it seemed like Flake had made up his mind to vote with every other Republican committeeman to confirm Kavanaugh? Flake was so malleable that a strong wind could knock him over. Then there was Senator Lisa Murkowski who loves being a contrarian (she ultimately sided with the Democrats); and Senator Susan Collins, who ended up voting yes and sealing the deal.
With Barrett, there was no such wishy-washy opening for Democrats to exploit. Jeff Flake retired, never to be seen again in any meaningful way. Flake sends checks to Democrats and continues to snipe at Trump, but he’s been put out to the #NeverTrump pasture and will languish in obscurity as one of the biggest hypocrites of all time.
Murkowski and Collins indicated they wouldn’t vote to confirm Barrett’s nomination (though Murkowski is getting pressure to vote yes), deeming it too close to the election, but fortunately, Majority Leader Mitch McConnell doesn’t need their votes. Collins is in a tight reelection race, so she can be granted a bit of a pass on this one. This year’s “Flake” stand-in is Senator Mitt Romney, though the 2012 GOP nominee has already indicated he’ll favor Barrett.
Therefore, Republicans have all the votes they’ll need. Democrats realized the futility of giving Barrett the Kavanaugh treatment, so why bother looking awful to the voters? Before we give Democrats too much credit, though, consider that they’re restraining themselves for sinister reasons. Like a football team in a tied game that allows the other side to score a touchdown at the goal line so as to preserve enough time to receive the ball and mount a last-minute drive to even up the game again, Democrats are saving their biggest rhetorical guns for Trump himself.
They’ll do anything to get ol’ Grampa Joe elected. And it has nothing to do with hugs or being nice. Don’t be fooled.
In 2020, enthusiasm ain’t everything, but it’s much better than not having it
Conservative firebrand columnist Kurt Schlichter says he can always tell which candidate is ahead in any political race by who’s having the most fun. If merriment is the deciding factor, President Trump will win next month’s election in a landslide. Is his backers’ enthusiasm enough to win on Election Day? S.A. Miller and Seth McLaughlin reported at The Washington Times, “President Trump is out to prove, as he did in 2016, that size does matter when it comes to drawing massive crowds to campaign rallies.
“Thousands of cheering fans turned out for his freewheeling rallies at every stop as he barnstormed … from Florida to Georgia to Michigan to Wisconsin and Nevada. It’s an enthusiasm edge over Democratic challenger Joseph R. Biden that Mr. Trump relishes. ‘We’ve got the most energy in the history of politics, and he’s got the least,’ the president boasted to a rally crowd Saturday in Janesville, Wisconsin.
“Indeed, Mr. Biden is lucky to have 100 supporters at one of his events, though he says a smaller crowd is more prudent during a pandemic. He is also banking on a less-is-more master plan that capitalizes on what he sees as America’s Trump fatigue.”
As stated before, Biden won’t be able to get away with his “I’m hiding from the coronavirus” excuse forever. Trump’s outdoor rallies draw thousands, and not all of them are wearing masks. Yet even the snoopy, biased media has been unable to report them as “super spreader” events. Where’s the coverage? Who has died because of a Trump rally?
Not only is Biden dull as heck as a candidate, he’s uninspiring to everyone -- even his voters. Democrats depend on enough people disliking Trump to prevail. Anger gets people to the polls, but it's not enough to win it all, especially when Trump has millions of happy supporters.
Judge Amy Coney Barrett’s confirmation process certainly benefitted Trump. Some Americans may not take to Trump’s over-the-top personality, but they see him as an effective means to place people like Barrett in positions to make a difference. Enthusiasm for a candidacy is hard to measure; but lack of energy is easily discernible. Joe Biden should be worried.
Amy Coney Barrett nomination
Senate Judiciary Committee vote