Seeds: February of 2016 saw the death of Supreme Court Justice, Antonin Scalia. Scalia’s death created an opening in the Supreme Court, an opening that has remained without a nominee until earlier this week when President Obama nominated Merrick Garland to fill the position.
Core: Garland is the current chief judge for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. circuit and is known for being respected by both Republicans and Democrats. President Obama’s decision to nominate a fairly moderate judge is an obvious effort to bridge the gap between the two parties and decrease the partisan nature of the court (Presidents tend to elect judges whose decisions mirror their own value systems, often making the voices on the court divided).
Skin: President Obama has been criticized by many liberals for his failure to nominate a member of a minority group for the position and for attempting to appease “intransigent Republicans.” Despite these appeasement efforts, Republican Senate majority leader, Mitch McConnell (AKA Turtle Man), stated that the Senate Republicans would not take Judge Garland into consideration, despite his general bipartisan approval, stating that this was an issue “about a principle, not a person.”
Leaves: As of right now, it is unclear whether or not President Obama’s nomination will cleared by the Senate. However, what is clear, is that whoever is chosen to join the Supreme Court will help to define the American political landscape for many years to come, given the extremely important cases coming to the courts soon.
Food For Thought: Do you think the Senate’s blocking of Judge Garland is truly a matter of principle, or simply a matter of political gain? Do you think that the Senate will take any judge into consideration that President Obama chooses, or will they wait for the next president? Do you think President Obama should have nominated a more liberal judge? Do you think Judge Garland will be allowed to join the Supreme Court?