To remind regular readers who may have forgotten, and newer readers who have not taken the time to review the list of Concepts and Special Terms (Shame! SHAME!!!), ethics train wrecks are “chains of unethical conduct created by a central unethical action. As the event becomes more complex and involves more participants, it becomes increasingly difficult to sort out right from wrong, and all parties who become involved with the episode in any way are at risk of engaging in unethical conduct themselves, intentionally or inadvertently.”
In no particular order:
- It’s not called The Ruth Bader Ginsburg Ethics Train Wreck for nothing. The individual responsible for this ethics train wreck is, aptly enough, Ruth Bader Ginsburg. It was irresponsible for her to stay on the court well past her shelf date, as it is irresponsible for any judge to deny the unavoidable effects of age on their acumen and ability. This would have been true if she were completely healthy, but the Justice had cancer, and that also had to sap her energy.
This was arrogance, and any harm to the nation that comes from her refusal to retire ten years ago is part of her legacy.
- Everyone is a hypocrite. If Mitch McConnell is a hypocrite for treating the SCOTUS nomination by a sitting Republican President differently from his treatment of a Democratic President’s nomination under similar circumstances, so are Democrats for insisting that he should again do what they claimed was unconscionable in 2016, because this time they think it will benefit them.
Althouse points out: “The strongest argument for Trump to go right ahead and immediately nominate someone is that President Obama made a nomination in the election year of 2016 when Antonin Scalia died. Obama’s nominee was not confirmed, but that was because the GOP controlled the Senate. There was nothing about Obama’s lack of support in the Senate that made him more willing to put forward a nomination in an election year. He made the nomination in spite of the lack of support. Why should Trump refrain when he has Senate support?”
Oh, you know: Because he’s different, and what other Presidents do or did is automatically outrageous when he does the same thing. Continue reading