MONTGOMERY VILLAGE, MD: The implications of the next election can not be overemphasized. There is always talk of how important every election is; however, the impact of the Election 2020 is generational. What is at stake? The countries Federal and Supreme Court political leanings.
While the court judiciary is always to be apolitical, the reality is that Federal judges and the Supreme’s are becoming more and more obvious in allowing their politics to influence their decisions. (The Politics of Judges)
The Supreme Court
With the Republican Senate refusing to consider Judge Garland as a replacement for Justice Scalia and the resigning of Justice Kennedy, President Trump was able to name two conservatives to the Supreme Court. These appointments guarantee a conservative-leaning Court for upcoming decades.
Justice Kennedy was considered the most independent of the conservative judges and would sometimes cast the swing vote. His replacement, Justice Kavanaugh, is likely to always vote with the conservative majority. The configuration of the Court today is five conservatives and four liberal/progressives.
Also of consequence is the fact that three sitting Justices are very old:
|Justice||Date of Birth||Appointed by||Sworn in|
Age: 71 yr 8 mo
|George H. W. Bush||10/23/1991
Served: 28 yr 4 mo
|Ruth Bader Ginsburg||3/15/1933
Age: 86 yr 11 mo
Served: 26 yr 6 mo
Age: 81 yr 6 mo
Served: 25 yr 7 mo
|John G. Roberts||1/27/1955
Age: 65 yr 1 mo
|George W. Bush||9/29/2005
Served: 14 yr 5 mo
|Samuel A. Alito, Jr.||4/1/1950
Age: 69 yr 11 mo
|George W. Bush||1/31/2006
Served: 14 yr 1 mo
Age: 65 yr 8 mo
Served: 10 yr 6 mo
Age: 59 yr 10 mo
Served: 9 yr 6 mo
|Neil McGill Gorsuch||8/29/1967
Age: 52 yr 6 mo
|Donald John Trump||4/10/2017
Served: 2 yr 10 mo
|Brett Michael Kavanaugh||2/12/1965
Age: 55 yr 0 mo
|Donald John Trump||10/6/2018
Served: 1 yr 5 mo
Justices Thomas (71), Ginsburg (86) and Breyer (81) are the senior members of the Court.
Justice Ginsburg is the oldest and she has health challenges, including recurring cancer. It is likely that she and maybe even Justice Breyer will be replaced by the next president.
President Obama left judicial appointments empty, hundreds of Federal Judges were appointed by President Trump. (Trump thanks Obama for leaving so many judicial vacancies) Democrats counter that Obama did not leave the vacancies. That instead, Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) refused to fill Obama’s appointments.
If President Trump is reelected, it would even move the balance even more to the right, making it seven conservatives and two liberal/progressives in the Supreme Court. Even if Justice Breyer hangs on for the next election cycle, the balance still looks bad for liberal/progressives.
The implications are enormous. Women’s right to abortion on demand could be in danger with the possible reversal of Roe v. Wade. The list of environmental, health, economic and labor issues that would be decided with a conservative-leaning court is too long to list here.
For the past three-plus years President Trump’s administration and Congress have tried to dismantle the only comprehensive Affordable Care Act in our history. The conservative Supreme Court is currently considering some of its underpinnings. President Trump says that he wants to improve elements of the Affordable Care Act after having stripped some elements, like the individual mandate tax, away.
Chances are that some of these attempts will be successful unless Congress acts. President Trump and the Republicans in Congress have not been able to articulate a rational replacement to Obama care. (How Trump Is Remaking Health Insurance Without Repealing Obamacare)
The common theme among votes is that if you want to continue this indecision and even worse, a new Republican plan that would take many away from health insurance, vote for President Trump and the Republicans.
If on the other hand, you want to have a fix to Obamacare and possibly a government-run option for those that cannot afford coverage, vote Democratic.
Chances are that a radical change as proposed by Sanders and Warren will have very little chance to pass the legislature. For one, Medicare for All ignores that those who have private insurance contribute to health care costs that allow for Medicare to provide lower costs. If private insurance is fully replaced with Medicare for All, hospitals and doctors will have to function without the financial input from the privately insured.
With the Health industry contributing 16% of our economy, current conditions would probably be around for a long time.
Environment including climate change
President Trump has been a climate change denier/dismisser since he took office. His exit from international programs has been widely documented. His administration, under the guise of deregulation, has gutted air and clean water regulations.
The latest attempt is to water down or vacate the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) that requires among other things the generation of environmental impact statements (EIS) for all federally funded projects. This document requires the disclosure of all environmental and cultural impacts of projects.
If you believe this is the proper way forward to protect the environment, vote for President Trump and the Republicans, otherwise vote Democratic.
Under President Trump, the budget for the military has increased to almost $700 billion. Most of these funds go to fund arms, not to help the soldiers. Some of these funds have been used to fund President Trump’s wall along our southern border.
It is possible that a Democratic administration might reverse this trend.
These are but a few of the reasons that the next election in November of 2020 will be critical for the future of our country. If you want this trend to continue, vote for President Trump. If you do not, vote Democratic.
— Headline image: CCO image via the Smithsonian web site. Credit Line Ellen Harmon – 1997
Mario Salazar, the 21st Century Pacifist, is a life-long liberal Democrat and proud of it. He is in Twitter (@chbcharus), LinkedIn and Facebook (Mario Salazar).