Conservatives Just Got Fed Up And Made A Big Move To Stop Obama’s S.C. Nominee

As the fight to replace Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia heats up, the conservative grassroots are holding potentially waffling Republican senators’ feet to the fire.

Radio talk show host and former Reagan administration appointee Hugh Hewitt began the hashtag #NoHearingNoVotes on Friday as a way to rally Republicans in Washington, D.C. to stand firm in Senate Majority leader Mitch McConnell’s pledge not to move forward on an Obama nominee during a presidential election year.

The Daily Signal reports that Sens. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, Susan Collins of Maine, Jeff Flake of Arizona, Mark Kirk of Illinois, and Thom Tillis of North Carolina are Republicans worth closely watching to see what they may do if the president puts forward a nominee, as he has promised to do. 

Fourteen Republicans would have to join with the 46 Democrats in the Senate in order to approve an Obama nominee to the court. So far, 31 of the GOP senators have ruled out voting for a replacement for Scalia this year, leaving 23 who have not ruled out casting the vote, the New York Times reported.

Murkowski, who is the most liberal Republican seeking re-election in 2016, initially told reporters in Alaska that “I do believe that the nominee should get a hearing,” adding, “That doesn’t necessarily mean that that ends up in a vote. The purpose of the hearing is to determine whether or not this individual, based on their record … should be named to the highest court in the land.”

After receiving negative blowback from Hewitt and others, the senator appeared to walk back her statement the next day, posting on Facebook: “While the President has the Constitutional prerogative to send a nominee to the Senate for consent, it is left to the Senate to determine how to proceed after that. Given the timing of this vacancy, in the middle of our Presidential election, the American people will clearly be weighing in on the direction of the Supreme Court.”

She went on to urge President Barack Obama to follow precedent and allow his successor to appoint a replacement for Justice Scalia, and acknowledged the Senate does have the right to deny the nominee an up or down vote.

Hewitt accused Murkowski of waffling, implying she may not be a reliable supporter to block an Obama nominee.

The talk show host also targeted Sen. Dean Heller, R-Nev., for his initial comments about replacing Scalia this year. The senator called for a wait-and-see approach, saying maybe the president would nominate a Nevadan. 

His spokesman later made clear that the senator believes the president should not nominate a replacement.

Sen. Kirk stated on Monday that it his his “duty” to give an Obama nominee an up or down vote. The Hill reported that Sen. Chuck Grassley, chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, has not ruled out the possibility of a hearing if the president nominates someone, though he wrote an op-ed with Sen. McConnell arguing Obama should not.

As reported by Western Journalism, Democrats including President Obama and Sen. Chuck Schumer are seemingly engaging in the heights of hypocrisy in calling on Republicans to fulfill their constitutional duty and move quickly to approve a nominee to the court.

Both voted to filibuster Justice Samuel Alito’s nomination, and Schumer called on the Senate not to approve any of President George W. Bush’s possible nominees to the high court during his last 18 months in office, except under “extraordinary circumstances.”

The Daily Signal noted that when the Democrats controlled the Senate in 1992, they purposely delayed Pres. George H.W. Bush’s judicial appointments at all levels in order to leave at least 50 vacancies for a possible Democrat successor, who turned out to be Bill Clinton.

According to the Heritage Foundation, Senate Democrats engaged in similar delaying tactics, once again, in the early 2000s after George W. Bush became president, and they controlled the Senate. By the end of his first two years in office, the number of openings in the federal courts had increased from 67 to 77, indicating Senate approvals were not even keeping up with retirements from the bench.

Among the more high profile instances was when the Democrats first blocked Miguel Estrada’s appointment to the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals in 2001, and then filibustered the nominee after the Republicans took over the Senate in 2002. Estrada had the support of the majority of senators needed for approval, but Republicans could not break the filibuster, so the nominee withdrew his name from consideration.

Image Credit: Heritage Foundation

Image Credit: Heritage Foundation

While conservatives urge Senate Republicans to stand firm, it would appear many Senate Democrats have no legs on which to stand when urging quick election-year action to replace Scalia.

Will GOP Senate Fold Like A Cheap Suit On Court Appointment?

The death of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia last week sets up an interesting look at why many people who self-identify as Republicans have no trust whatsoever in the party they self-identify with.

Scalia was, without a doubt, the most prominent conservative on the Court.

The Democrat Party, in their wettest of dreams, would like him to be replaced with a doctrinaire liberal who would vote to uphold things like affirmative action, EPA regulations that kill coal-fired power plants, abortion on demand, open borders and the rest of the left’s laundry list.

But Supreme Court appointments are only nominated by the President.

They must be confirmed by the Senate. And, unlike earlier in President Obama’s terms, the Senate is under the control of the Republican Party. Sort of. (We’ll get to that in a minute.)

You see, the very same people who nominally “control” the Senate are also the reason why Donald Trump holds a large lead in the polls. The average voter trusts a used car dealer more than their Senator—of either party.

And while Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell immediately said that the Senate would not consider a new appointment during an election year, the question reverberating amongst the party base is: do you really believe him?

Frankly, the only thing that will keep McConnell honest is the fact that should he and his fellow establishment Republicans break ranks and confirm an Obama nomination, it will be the last thing they ever do as a Senator.

If the party’s long-suffering base is willing to nominate Trump—and it clearly is—then it is not a very big stretch to assume that very same base will destroy the careers of any Senator responsible for replacing Scalia with a liberal and changing the balance of the court.

Essentially, it is time for the Republicans to learn to play by Harry Reid’s rules. Which is to say that when Reid was the Majority Leader and he wanted something, there WEREN’T any rules. Harry was only too happy to cram Obamacare through the Senate on a budget reconciliation act and bypass the filibuster. Harry was only too happy to change the rules so a cloture vote on lower level nominations would only require a simple majority.

So, given the playing field that Reid, a mean, nasty and not very smart smash-mouth political player, invented, it should be a fairly simple maneuver to hold up a vote on Scalia’s replacement until after an election.

But that assumes that McConnell is smarter than Reid and more reliable.

And that’s why the base is more than a little worried. When Trump talks about America being run by stupid people, he’s not only talking about Obama and his ilk.

It’s not like Republicans have covered themselves with glory. Especially in the Senate.

As New Jersey Governor Chris Christie so eloquently put it before he dropped out of the race for President—“when you’re a governor of a state… they expect you to plow the snow. They expect you to get the schools open. And when the worst natural disaster in your state’s history hits you, they expect you to rebuild their state.”

On the other hand, when you’re a Senator, you talk. And talk is cheap. It’s the best job most Senators could ever get, and frankly, most Senators could not hold a job in the private sector with the salary and perks they have.  So, they will do almost anything to keep the job.

The public is not stupid.

They know this, and many simply do not trust anyone in the Senate with good reason.

So, despite what McConnell said, the jury is out on what the GOP Senate will actually do.

If they stay the course, great. People will gain some faith in the GOP Senate, and it might reflect itself in the election results.

If they fold like a cheap suit—as they have in the recent past—then the result could and should destroy the Republican Party.

Hillary Railed Against Senate Repubs Over Scalia Replacement, Then THIS Video Surfaced

The fight to replace recently deceased Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia is heating up, with both Democrats and Republicans weighing in on the matter.

The consensus by Republicans is that the nomination should be made by the next president, not President Barack Obama. At the same time, statements made by Democrats, including Obama, indicate the Democrats will move swiftly to nominate a replacement.

Hillary Clinton tweeted out what MSNBC called a “firestorm” of tweets, charging the Senate with the task of swiftly confirming a nomination for the vacant SCOTUS seat. However, as even MSNBC noted, moving swiftly to confirm a SCOTUS nomination wasn’t something Clinton tried to do when George W. Bush was president in 2005.

From 2001 to 2003, Senate Democrats used the filibuster to reject ten presidential nominees for federal judge positions. Later, in July 2005, Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor announced her retirement. And in September of that year, Chief Justice William Rehnquist passed away. Subsequently, Bush was charged with nominating replacements for two open SCOTUS seats. When Bush nominated Judge Samuel Alito to replace O’Connor, Senate Democrats including Clinton and Obama attempted to filibuster Alito’s nomination.

Clinton’s recent tweets telling the Senate to quickly approve a Scalia replacement when Obama presents a nominee are in complete contrast with Clinton’s full and active participation in the delay of a Supreme Court nominee while she was a senator, an apparent hypocrisy which MSNBC noted on Tuesday.

MSNBC ran a video from 2005 in which Clinton spoke out against the nomination of Alito. “He has rarely sided with individuals seeking relief from discrimination on the basis of race, age, gender, or disability. In fact, in the vast majority of civil rights cases, Judge Alito has sided with those who would infringe on the civil rights of Americans,” she said.

The attempt to filibuster Alito failed, and he was confirmed in January of 2006.

Ironically, since that time, Senate Democrats have made it easier for Republicans to block a potential Scalia replacement by changing the rules of the Senate to allow for the “nuclear option.” Senate Democrats including Harry Reid employed the nuclear option to quickly confirm Obama appointees by allowing for a simple majority vote.

As Hollywood actor James Woods tweeted earlier this week, “Chickens will come home to roost, @HarryReid.” It’s now quite possible, even probable, the Democrats will have a tougher time with their nomination because of their historic use of the filibuster and the nuclear option, something Senate Republicans have surely not forgotten.

Senior Staffer Tells Story About Rubio He ‘Never Had A Chance’ To Tell Before – It’ll Shock Supporters

It seems that, as election day draws nearer, the candidates are increasing in their intensity to discredit their opponents.

Saturday, on Breitbart News Daily, Stephen Miller, Donald Trump’s senior policy adviser, shared insights into Senator Marco Rubio’s deceptive conduct while pushing to get the Gang of Eight bill through the Senate.

The Gang of Eight consisted of four Republican and four Democrat Senators that joined forces in an effort to introduce a bill on immigration, an issue that lawmakers have struggled with for decades.

Miller was then working for Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Ala. He alleges that Rubio “directly deceived” immigration law enforcement as well as the American people during this push.

Miller recounted one particular story about Sen. Rubio’s treatment of Chris Crane, the union president of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). He explained, for the first time ever, how Rubio treated Crane and how he allegedly deceived the ICE officers.

He claimed that during a press conference to introduce the Gang of Eight bill, Crane made several attempts to ask questions, but was refused the opportunity by Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y. Rubio apparently stood by and did nothing

Capitol Hill Security was seen escorting Crane from the press conference. Again, Rubio just watched and did not intervene.

Crane was then able to secure a meeting with Sen. Rubio. He wanted to bring a staffer from Senator Sessions’ office, who would be able to provide additional legislative support in the meeting. This request was vetoed completely by Rubio’s office.

Crane asserts that Rubio promised him things like more resources for ICE. Instead, Crane states, Rubio and the Gang of Eight introduced a bill, in the dead of night, delivering everything they wanted for pro-immigration special interest groups.

h/t: Breitbart

Congress Is Writing The President A Blank Check For War

While the Washington snowstorm dominated news coverage this week, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell was operating behind the scenes to rush through the Senate what may be the most massive transfer of power from the Legislative to the Executive branch in our history. The senior Senator from Kentucky is scheming, along with Sen. Lindsey Graham, to bypass normal Senate procedure to fast-track legislation to grant the president the authority to wage unlimited war for as long as he or his successors may wish.

The legislation makes the unconstitutional Iraq War authorization of 2002 look like a walk in the park. It will allow this president and future presidents to wage war against ISIS without restrictions on time, geographic scope, or the use of ground troops. It is a completely open-ended authorization for the president to use the military as he wishes for as long as he (or she) wishes. Even President Obama has expressed concern over how willing Congress is to hand him unlimited power to wage war.

President Obama has already far surpassed even his predecessor, George W. Bush, in taking the country to war without even the fig leaf of an authorization. In 2011, the president invaded Libya, overthrew its government, and oversaw the assassination of its leader, without even bothering to ask for Congressional approval. Instead of impeachment, which he deserved for the disastrous Libya invasion, Congress said nothing. House Republicans only managed to bring the subject up when they thought they might gain political points exploiting the killing of U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens in Benghazi.

It is becoming more clear that Washington plans to expand its war in the Middle East. Last week, the media reported that the U.S. military had taken over an air base in eastern Syria, and Defense Secretary Ashton Carter said that the U.S. would send in the 101st Airborne Division to retake Mosul in Iraq and to attack ISIS headquarters in Raqqa, Syria. Then on Saturday, Vice President Joe Biden said that if the upcoming peace talks in Geneva are not successful, the U.S. is prepared for a massive military intervention in Syria. Such an action would likely place the U.S. military face to face with the Russian military, whose assistance was requested by the Syrian government. In contrast, we must remember that the U.S. military is operating in Syria in violation of international law.

The prospects of such an escalation are not all that far-fetched. At the insistence of Saudi Arabia and with U.S. backing, the representatives of the Syrian opposition at the Geneva peace talks will include members of the Army of Islam, which has fought with al-Qaeda in Syria. Does anyone expect these kinds of people to compromise? Isn’t al-Qaeda supposed to be our enemy?

The purpose of the Legislative branch of our government is to restrict the Executive branch’s power. The Founders understood that an all-powerful king who could wage war at will was the greatest threat to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. That is why they created a people’s branch, the Congress, to prevent the emergence of an all-powerful autocrat to drag the country to endless war. Sadly, Congress is surrendering its power to declare war.

Let’s be clear: If Senate Majority Leader McConnell succeeds in passing this open-ended war authorization, the U.S. Constitution will be all but a dead letter.

© Copyright 2016 Ron Paul