Written by Robert Warden
Thank you to my friend Bruce Kunkel, as well as Robert Reich, for pointing out this issue recently.
You are probably aware of the fact that incarcerated people are not allowed to vote in the United States. That may seem reasonable too, at least on the surface. However, the voting restrictions go far beyond disallowing violent criminals, for instance, from voting. In fact, many nations do allow incarcerated people to vote. Whether one agrees with that or not, it has not appeared to have decremented the political systems in these nations. In contrast, the systematic imprisoning of large numbers of minority persons, then not allowing them to vote — in many cases even after being released from prison — represents another huge brick in the wall that conservatives have built to help insulate themselves from progressives. Read more
Written by Robert Warden
One of the great things about writing blogs that I need to research is that doing so is educational. Presumably, reading them is also educational for many people. I have often heard in the past that presidents appoint many judges, but the details were sketchy to me. For this post, I have needed to look up the basics of what kind of courts a president appoints judges to, which in fact is far more judgeships than I had realized. Read more
By Robert Warden
On February 13, 2016, Supreme Court (in)Justice Antonin Scalia died, apparently in his sleep. This vacancy in the court made the number of “liberal” and “conservative” members of the Supreme Court equal. Afterward, President Obama quickly nominated a relatively moderate judge, Merrick Garland, as Scalia’s replacement. In response, the Republican majority in the Senate, led by Mitch McConnell, refused to consider Garland throughout the remainder of Obama’s term, almost one year, even though Garland was a moderate, compromise nominee. This was an unprecedented move by the Republicans, in a blatant attempt to keep their majority on the Supreme Court, knowing that this is a vital part of their efforts to rig the political system. Sadly, their maneuver worked when Donald Trump was appointed President by the Electoral College. He promptly nominated conservative judge Neil Gorsuch for the Supreme Court, who Republican Senators confirmed and placed on the court by resorting to the “nuclear option” of requiring only a simple majority of Senators in order to confirm Gorsuch, rather than at least 60 votes as is customary (https://www.nytimes.com/…/neil-gorsuch-supreme-court-senate…) Read more