Will Ginsburg’s legacy, and its possible reversal, be enough to make a portion of the electorate aware of what’s at stake a few weeks before this incandescent election?
The death of Ruth Bader Ginsburg is the ingredient that had been missing from this crucial race for the White House. Donald Trump wants to quickly replace the longest-serving woman on the Supreme Court and erase her singular legacy defending civil rights issues such as gender equality, as if inequality based on gender roles was not an intolerable stupidity.
The Republicans will spare no effort trying to bring about their goal of creating a comfortable majority in the Supreme Court that will guarantee, for more than a generation (since these are lifetime appointments), a backward conservative agenda that flies in the face of all the battles that Ginsburg fought against gender inequality.
And they will do this in contradiction of the position they held almost exactly four years ago, when the very same Republican Senate leader blocked Barack Obama’s nomination of a new justice from advancing seven months from the end of his term, arguing that it was necessary to wait for the results of the election that ultimately resulted in Trump’s victory.
Mitch McConnell’s contradictory move reveals an immense shamelessness and lack of respect for the country and for democracy. If Trump succeeds in seating a new justice during this presidential term, it is certain that his agenda will be able to draw on a reinvigorated rehearing of issues including abortion rights, same-sex marriage, religious freedom, immigration law and the opposite of all that is minimally humanist or progressive, with inevitable repercussions everywhere.
Ginsburg’s replacement and the ensuing hearings and confirmation process will not be innocuous. They will help Trump free himself of the COVID-19 disaster, which he can’t manage, reinforce his “law and order” message, and serve to anchor his campaign even more clearly in an unabashedly conservative tone. Joe Biden has before him the challenge of convincing a young and bitter electorate, far from loyal to his record, about the importance of voting and its ramifications on the hierarchies of power.
Will Ginsburg’s legacy, and its possible reversal, be enough to make a portion of the electorate aware of what’s at stake a few weeks before this incandescent election? The nomination of a new Supreme Court justice is the clearest indication that, in this election, choosing Republicans or Democrats still makes some difference.
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