“The duty of the President to nominate and the duty of the Senate to give its advice and consent to Supreme Court Justices are among the most important functions of our constitutional government. Politicizing the sensitive Supreme Court selection process carries the danger of permanently injuring the independence, integrity, and institutional individuality of the third branch.”
— Senator Orrin Hatch, July 30, 1997
For weeks now, Senator Orrin Hatch has been the point man for the GOP’s campaign of deception, deflection, and distraction as it frantically tries to keep the American people from fully understanding the severity of the obstruction currently occurring in the Senate. He’s written quite a few pieces, both for press releases and for publications such as Time, USA Today, The New York Times, Bloomberg View, The Deseret News, and the Salt Lake Tribune.
Hatch has killed lots of trees telling much the same story: Read the rest of this entry »
As I outlined here, the historical precedents claimed as justification by Republican Senators refusing even to consider Merrick Garland’s nomination to the Supreme Court don’t actually support their position. The precedents actually support holding hearings and a vote. Highlights:
- The last time a vacancy opened on the court during in an election year was 1932. The Republican Senate confirmed Republican president Hoover’s nominee in 9 days.
- The last time a vacancy opened in an election year with adversaries controlling the Senate and White House was March of 1888. Grover Cleveland’s nominee was confirmed in 81 days by a Republican Senate.
Since Garland’s nomination, Senator Orrin Hatch of Utah has emerged as the leading voice on the Republican side, which seems to have settled on a statement by then-Judiciary Committee Chairman Joe Biden proffered on the Senate floor on June 25, 1992 while laying out a broad argument for changing the Supreme Court confirmation process. Twisting the blade of what they clearly consider to be an effective weapon, they have dubbed it “the Biden Rule.” Read the rest of this entry »
On this date (March 23) in 1888, Chief Justice of the United States Morrison Waite died unexpectedly of pneumonia.
This is relevant today because 1888 was the most recent time a Supreme Court vacancy opened with a Democrat in the White House and the GOP holding a Senate majority. It was also an election year, so it is the best comparison history provides for today’s situation.
Justice Waite died 228 days before that year’s election. Justice Scalia’s death happened 269 days before this year’s election day.
An open letter to Tony Kornheiser, who has been effusive in his praise for Yoenis Cespedes and his impact on the Mets this year.
OF COURSE Yoenis Cespedes should be in the MVP discussion. What could the Mets possibly have accomplished without Him, the anointed one?
Before He arrived, the Mets had a batting average of .234 and an OPS of .662. Between August 1st when He arrived and September 9th when the sweep of Washington effectively ended the season, His teammates batted .270 with an OPS of .814.
Obviously, they were better only because He was there. Read the rest of this entry »
I’ve been pulling game data from Baseball Reference, enabling me to compare game length data year-to-year–in this case as of May 31. My method of pulling this data is fairly slow and labor intensive, however, so I’ve only got it back to 2010 so far.
I’ve written previously that today’s longer game lengths are not indicative of a problem, but rather that the game is being played better than in the past. I said that MLB’s pace-of-play rules wouldn’t make a significant difference in overall game length.
Here we are, two months into the season. Time to look at some data. Read the rest of this entry »
I was finishing a project last night and couldn’t do one of my favorite things: go to Nats Park and watch the umpires practice their craft.
Let’s get one thing straight: Harper was not thrown out for arguing balls and strikes; when he was thrown out, he wasn’t saying a thing about umpire Marvin Hudson’s awful strike one call. Here’s a timeline of what happened. Quotes are my best guess based on my limited lipreading skills, but I’m pretty sure of most of it.
It all happened in 28 seconds. Read the rest of this entry »