March 17, 2016

The NYT is going big with the Merrick Garland nomination.



But I find it hard to believe the American electorate has much interest in the subject. I follow the Supreme Court and law-related news continually, yet I feel no motivation to read these articles. To me, it seems that the NYT is serving its usual readers the fare they expect, but I doubt if anyone is getting more stirred up about the appointment process now that they know the name. The political situation is stagnant. Has anyone been nudged into a higher state of excitation? I'm guessing at how jaded other people feel, even though I'm in an unusual situation, being a lawprof blogger and all. The Republicans in the Senate seem so marginalized in relation to presidential politics right now. This attempt to prod us into being irritated with them is itself irritating. That the nominee would be highly qualified and impressive was always already understood. What is the incentive to learn more or think more about the particular individual? Surely not that the NYT frontpages a slew of headlines.

82 comments:

buwaya said...

The NYT is a political instrument, as was "Pravda".
Its content is properly considered as being directed by the executive organs of a political faction. The "readers" are beside the point. They exist, that is all.

TWW said...

And if you are correct, the Republican leadership in the Senate should just ignore the Obama submittal.

Limited blogger said...

I'm ignoring the NYT effort to make me not ignore Mr. Merrick

Fen said...

He's a gun control goon, not a moderate.

But the sidebet is the GOP will cave in 2 weeks or when Chris Mathews calls them Poopy Heads, whichever comes first.

readering said...

It's the Newspaper of Record. What else would one expect? Plus yesterday was practically declared a snow day in presidential campaign politics, with relatively little news.

Rob said...

The Times is following its Augusta National coverage pattern.

Sebastian said...

"This attempt to prod us into being irritated with them is itself irritating." And it is irritating that anyone should, at this late date, find the NYT's prodding "irritating," though I would hope it is faux irritation.

TosaGuy said...

Pictures are selected for a reason.

rehajm said...

Has Republican leadership finally discovered they don't have to honor every wish of the opposition under the threat of retaliation from the NYT?

The Cracker Emcee said...

Garland's a statist tool. It is often forgotten that Big Crime Fightin' was one of the original wedges of Big Government. The success of the FBI's struggle with Dillinger and his peers was considered an important part of selling the New Deal to the American public of the time.

YoungHegelian said...

Every Republican officeholder in the country looks at the Trump candidacy & now knows that there are political changes afoot in this country that the Republican Party cannot protect him from.

If a Republican senator agreed to vote on an Obama nominee to the SCOTUS, thus giving the Dems the tie breaking vote, he will lose the next Republican primary in his state to a challenger. All politics is local. Given the choice between disappointing the NYT & or losing his seat, the Senators will choose disappointing the Times.

Nonapod said...

The GOP has no apparent reason to give in. But the GOP has a exceptional gift for being cataclysmically stupid, so all bets are off.

Sammy Finkelman said...

I think that with the New York Times it's almost a matter of policy to cover Supreme Court nominees, and since, editorially - and here editorial policy really does affect what's put on the front page - editorially they oppose holding up a Supreme Court nomination (well, if the nomination is done by a president whose court picks they like) they treat it as BIG NEWS that he might not get confirmed, or at least write all about the battle.

The printed paper front page isn't quite so focused on this. There's a 1-line 8-column headline reading:

OBAMA PICK ENGAGES SUPREME COURT BATTLE

With two stories on the right hand side of the paper and one story on the far left column, and, in between them, a picture of Biden, Garland shaking hands with Obama, and Obama as seen from the back.

The right side stories, one under the other, are:

Centrist Appelate Judge Is Named
-- G.O.P. Leaders Refuse to Budge


(and underneath that story)

MAN IN THE NEWS MERRICK BRIAN GARLAND (capital letters but small type)
-------

Deference, With Limits

The left hand column story is:

Showdown
Felt Acriss
The Capital


But they have other stories on the front page, as well.

Above the fold:

Amid Scandal, Brazil's Leader
Gives Predecessor Legal Shield


(She appointed him Chief of staff, a cabinet level position, which means that he can only be tried by Brazil's highest court, which is backlogged with corruption cases.)

And:

G.O.P. Enters
Shadow Race
For Delegates


There's also, beneath the fold;

His Patients in Pain, a Doctor Must Limit Their Use of Opioids

And 9 1-paragrah squibbs for other stories, plus a mention of Nicholas Kristof's column along with the editorial page. Also a picture which is a little ad for an article about museums and the ethics of ignoring their source of their status and wealth. And a pretty large advertisement for Tiffany on the bottom right corner, too.

The Wall Street Journal has as its major headline:

Fed Dials Back Pace of Rate Hikes

And the next most important:

Trump Keeps Up Pressure on Wary GOP

(The Wall Street Journal does not put periods in "GOP."

Right beneath the fold is the big story on the Supreme Court nomination:

Obama Picks Justice, Setting Off
High-Stakes Fight with zSenate


The New York Post front page is all about the Hulk Hogan sex tape testimony.

And the Daily News is split between some headlines - and advocacy - about Trump and stopping him, and how Jared Fogle, the pedophile SUBWAY pitchman, was beaten in prison and the excuse made.

The top of Daily News has: pictures of Cruz and Kasich on the left, and Trump on the right, and, in between them, all in yellow on black letters,

Going for
brokered!
PAGES 4-5


Below two lines, that start with a red dot, and continue with capital yellow on black letters:

o HOW GOP CAN STOP TRUMP AT CONTESTED CONVENTION
o DONALD THREATENS `RIOTS' IF HE'S NOT THE NOMINEE

MayBee said...

I think that picture is supposed to make us think he was a civil rights activist.

MayBee said...

Remember when the FBI withheld about 300,000 pages of documents from McVeigh's lawyers?

Sammy Finkelman said...

The wall Street Journal also has an editorial about the Supreme Court which ends by sayng that if GOP Senators up for re-election in blue states want to be more conciliatory they regard Judge Garland as a suitable choice for a Democratic president and would vote for him in a lame duck session if Mrs. Clinton wins the election. It says that would be calling Obama's bluff.

Schorsch said...

I'm definitely a member of the general public in this case, and I'm particularly impressed by this nominee. More so than any current member of the court. His story inspires because he was a prosecutor. Being a keen legal mind doesn't grab attention like leading the legal troops into Oklahoma City.

He also seems grounded, reasonable, and moderate. Maybe that was the intention. Throw this poor fellow into the gridlock, to make Republicans look unreasonable, and hope for Democrat victories in the next election.

Sammy Finkelman said...

MayBee said 3/17/16, 12:58 PM

Remember when the FBI withheld about 300,000 pages of documents from McVeigh's lawyers?

They should hold hearings and ask him what was going on with all that about not taking voluntary evidence at the start of the Oklahoma City bombing investigation, and whose idea was this. They may never get another chance. It's very strange for anyone to bring this up even, and that could only be because that's somebodys cover story. (To tout it as something great is pre-emptive, and somebody thought it important even 20 years later.)

And I doubt it was Garland who made that decision.

Bay Area Guy said...

Funny, I don't remember them going this route for Robert Bork. Hmm, I wonder why?

traditionalguy said...

Eight years ago McCain was scared to death of hit pieces from the NYT. He had no courage to fight back so he hired Palin to do that and take the heat John was afraid to take.

Wow has the world changed since Trump has let the have it..."a failed Newspaper that will soon be sold for a dollar to a Rich Man as a lavalier."

mccullough said...

Trump has sucked the oxygen out of this nomination issue (and other issues). So he has already been more helpful to a conservative cause than the previous two GOP presidential candidates.

Amanda said...

Perhaps people aren't as engaged in the story as much as they might be otherwise is because it's no longer any surprise that the Republican Party is completely dysfunctional and they no longer expect them to do anything productive. To stir up outrage after so many outrages just seems like a wasted emotion.

That the Republican Senate thinks it's a good idea to give this last insult to President Obama only makes them look even more base than we already thought them to to be. They gave us a Candidate Trump, a true reflection of the complete wreck the GOP has become.

n.n said...

Republicans should nominate and confirm Cruz to The Supreme Court. That would end the intra-tribal conflicts and respond to Democrats in their native language: we won, sit down, and shut up. And restore the ballast to the court that will compensate for its leftist list.

Oh, and throw another baby on the barby, Obama. The liberals will be over for dinner.

Gahrie said...

If the Senate was called into order today, and the nomination of Garland brought up, and approved unanimously, the MSM would still find a way to frame it as a political attack against the Democrats, and a sign of Republican hatred.

MayBee said...

That the Republican Senate thinks it's a good idea to give this last insult to President Obama

Oh, Poor Obama!!!!!!

YoungHegelian said...

@Amanda,

They gave us a Candidate Trump, a true reflection of the complete wreck the GOP has become.

You mean, as opposed to Clinton, which the Democrats have given us?

The only difference in the insanity level between Trump & Clinton is that Clinton has had the press & her entourage to cover for her all these years, while Trump is right out there with it.

Seriously, find an in-depth biography of the Clinton years that doesn't paint HRC as a totally whack bitch to everyone in her orbit.

Fred Rawlings said...

I personally don't listen to what Journalism Majors type in the Newspapers that they got hired onto. If they want to have some credibility, they need to start a blog and earn their readership. And pass Organic Chemistry, too, while they are at it.

MayBee said...

That the Republican Senate thinks it's a good idea to give this last insult to President Obama only makes them look even more base than we already thought them to to be. They gave us a Candidate Trump,

If the Republican Senate had stood up to Obama more, we wouldn't have a Candidate Trump. Notice who is in second place?

Gahrie said...

They gave us a Candidate Trump

As bad as Trump is, (and I agree he is bad) he's still a better choice than a 75 year old Communist refugee from the 70's or the 68 year old physical incarnation of evil and corruption.

Amanda said...

Oh poor America that one party is so useless. Oh poor America that we pay the salary of useless people who refuse to do their jobs. Oh poor America that the GOP hoisted Donald Trump on us. President Obama comes out of his Presidency looking very good, the GOP not so much....

Gahrie said...

If the Republican Senate had stood up to Obama more, we wouldn't have a Candidate Trump.

Exactly. And the House Republicans haven't exactly covered themselves in glory either.

We gave the Republicans two landslide congressional victories, and a dominant position at the state level, but they still can't get anything done.

Skeptical Voter said...

Gee Schorsch I can't recall you being "inspired" because Rudy Guiliani was a prosecutor. So for that matter was Trey Gowdy. Lots of politicians and judges were prosecutors at one time. Heck even a public defender gets named to a judgeship once in a while. You have to remember that a judge--whether a Supreme Court member or a lowly municipal court judge is just a man or a woman in a black dress.

As for Merrick Garland's nomination by Obama? I am sure that Judge Garland is nice to his kids and wife; and that he was at one time a prosecutor. Maybe even his dog loves him. Reviews of his record are mixed.

But if a Democrat controlled congress could make Miguel Estrada's nomination languish for two years (after all he was the "wrong kind" of Hispanic/ wise Latino) then a Republican controlled Senate can sit this one out for 8 or 9 months. Now it's true that the Hildebeest may win this year's election, and the Senate may wish that it had confirmed Garland. But they have the right to take that chance.

So I can't get real excited about the Garland nomination, which is probably DOA in the Senate. Next question please.

james conrad said...

The SCOTUS has been a political court since at least the Bork nomination, the notion that Obama is going to get a free ride in his lame duck status is fantasy. If this was the other way around, with a Repub prez and a Dem senate, is there anyone that thinks there would be a confirmation of a justice?

Gahrie said...

President Obama comes out of his Presidency looking very good,

Within twenty years, Obama will be seen as one of the worst presidents ever.

Achilles said...

Amanda said...

"That the Republican Senate thinks it's a good idea to give this last insult to President Obama only makes them look even more base than we already thought them to to be. They gave us a Candidate Trump, a true reflection of the complete wreck the GOP has become."

The republicans have a nomination process where the voters wrecked the corrupt cronies plans. All of the millions spent trying to prop up insiders has failed. The candidate that is actually listening to the people is winning with almost no money spent.

The democrats look "organized" because the DNC is a corrupt political machine that is covering and propping up the corrupt politician. The DNC is functioning wonderfully. All of the plutocrats are propping up the woman who is the obvious wall street plutocrat choice. She is married to a rapist and slimed his victims.

The democrat machine works better than the republican machine because democrat voters, like you, are stoopid. With to o's.

coupe said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
MayBee said...

Amanda- who is refusing to do their jobs?

rcocean said...

Earl Warren was a tough no-nonsense DA. Brennan was a "tough" US army attorney during WW2, Marshall was a great friend of J.Edgar Hoover.

Amanda said...

What created Trump was the endless hatred and marginalizing of President Obama, the endless attempts to make him look less than American, by the GOP. They sowed the seeds of hatred, now they get to reap the rewards of seven years of "otherizing" everyone who didn't fit neatly into the small tent they put up. Gays, African Americans, Hispanics, Muslims, Women who want a choice, all "otherized" by the misogyny and bigotry of the GOP and the dupes that believed they had the best interests of the country at heart.

MayBee said...

What created Trump was the endless hatred and marginalizing of President Obama,

Tell me truthfully, Amanda. How do you think Democrats treated President Bush?

the endless attempts to make him look less than American, by the GOP

Could you please explain what this means?

mccullough said...

Amanda,

What created Sanders?

Trump and Sanders are running against 25 years of terrible bipartisan policies. Neither of them is even a member of the party whose primaries they are using to run what are essentially third party campaigns.

You need to quit being a narrow partisan, read more, and open your mind. Stopping being a useful idiot for some useless ideology.

Basil said...

Amanda, do you not remember BushHitler????????

No war for oil??????????

Bush lied people died???????????

Halliburton????????????

CheneyHitler????????????

Rumsfeld hatred??????????????

Condi Rice race baiting and vilification??????????????????

Bush was where the left went over the edge. The conservatives are not going to forgive and forget, especially when no one (and I mean no one) on the left has apologized for what was said and done to President Bush. Instead, we are treated to eight years of President Obama as Internet Troll - constantly poking and insulting the Republicans in Congress who were elected by the people.

The Supreme Court has lost its legitimacy as a neutral arbiter and is not seen (accurately) as a political body. For an explanation of that please look to penumbras and emanations, gay marriage appearing magically in the 14th Amendment and Judge Bork and Justice Thomas.

This is what has brought us to Trump. Trump is a reaction to the excesses of the left because he promises to fight the left, which the Republicans stopped doing in 1988.

johns said...

My understanding is that the constitution did not call for 9 justices, that the original concept of the court was for 6. so this could get interesting.

Amanda said...

"Narrow partisan"? Not hardly. I've said numerous times now that I would vote for Kascich if he had gotten the nomination over Hillary. While Kasich is still a conservative he is less an ideologue and strikes me more as a decent person who would not be so extreme as to harm the country, as would Cruz.

As for Trump who knows what he is, he isn't a true liberal, he isn't a true conservative, but he spews just the right amount of bigotry and fear that half of all conservatives seem to lap up like flies on shit. All you conservatives stood by while these destructive forces were wrecking your party, you may have even applauded them thinking that it would never affect you personally, or even thought they should double down, or because you were still butt hurt that Obama won two elections. Well your temper tantrum at having Obama as President has created this pathetic excuse for a political party and the mess the Republican election process is in now. You basically have ensured a Clinton Presidency.

Left Bank of the Charles said...

The game is to pressure and box in Rob Portman, Kelly Ayote, Mark Kirk, Patrick Toomey, Ron Johnson, and John McCain - then pick off a few of them in November. Democrats also have shots at the seats being made vacant by the retirement of Daniel Coats, and David Vitter, and Marco Rubio. That's 9 chances and they only need 4 or 5 pickups.

Donald Trump will work with anyone (right?) so why not play it safe and send a Democrat to the U.S. Senate.

Mary Beth said...

I would be interested in seeing a reporter ask Hillary if she would renominate him if Obama's nomination goes nowhere and she is elected president.

Henry said...

I would be interested in seeing a reporter ask Hillary if she would renominate him if Obama's nomination goes nowhere and she is elected president.

I think the Senate Republicans should propose that. Something to the tune that: "We don't feel it wise to hold hearings on a Supreme Court nominee in the midst of the campaign that will determine our next president. But we will happily consider Judge Garland if the next president renominates him."

buwaya said...

"he spews just the right amount of bigotry and fear "

Well, those are our better qualities, yes. Goes back a long, long way.
Required reading
- Burke, "Reflections on the Revolution in France"
- Russell Kirk - "The Conservative Mind" - available on the Althouse Amazon portal!

campy said...

I wonder what would happen if Merrick Garland were photographed playing the Augusta National golf course while wearing a Duke Lacrosse t-shirt.

Bill Peschel said...

*Checks Wikipedia*

"A native of the Chicago area, Garland graduated summa cum laude as valedictorian from Harvard College and graduated magna cum laude from Harvard Law School."

Another one?

Pass.

See? That was simple.

khesanh0802 said...

James Taranto has an excellent piece today on why there should be no hearings.

holdfast said...

Maybe if the left hadn't spent so much time comparing Reagan, Gingrich, Bush, Cheney, Ashcroft, Karl Rove and others to Hitler, we'd take them a bit more seriously when they compare Trump to Hitler. . .

Nah, because as terrible as Trump is, he's no Adolf Elisabeth Hitler.

n.n said...

They can select a new justice or assign a vote multiplier to one of the remaining justices (i.e. "super justice", "super voter") per Democrat precedent. Or just let a quasi-justice (e.g. illegal or unconfirmed) vote behind the scenes.

Earnest Prole said...

The Times’s own readers are uninspired by the candidate because they perceive him as too moderate, and therefore they can’t be bothered to work up much outrage toward Senate Republicans

mccullough said...

Amanda,

Kasich voted for NAFTA, the WTO, and trade with China. He then took a job with Wall Street. Now he vows to improve things through "sensible regulations," whatever that means and more supply side and trickle down bullshit.

He's a nice enough fellow but is part of the problem. That you're on board with his brand of nonsense doesn't make you open minded. It makes you either ignorant or a Country Club Republican

rehajm said...

Within twenty years, Obama will be seen as one of the worst presidents ever.

Obamacare will fail economically under the weight of its own rules by 2018, his tax policies will be quickly altered by whoever is in power, his selective law enforcement will quickly be selectively enforced, his first accomplishment as president would have been to close Guantanamo.

It won't take nearly that long.

Ann Althouse said...

"James Taranto has an excellent piece today on why there should be no hearings."

Yeah, I don't have a subscription, but I can see the first couple sentences. I guess his point is that if hearings were held, they'd have to go after Garland and try to "bork" him, which would be cruel to him. So, it's better for him to be spared the hearings.

If that's the point, I think it's hiding or missing the fact that going after Garland would make the Senators look bad, which is against their political interest. If they had to do the hearings, they'd have to do it with accuracy and dignity, and then it would be hard to vote against the guy. It's in their political interest to stand on the abstract principle that no hearings are warranted.

mccullough said...

Bork was an arrogant asshole and ideologue. Garland would be difficult to attack. He's a likable fellow who hasn't said anything incendiary.

Fernandinande said...

Merrick Garland emits carbon dioxide and methane.

Dan Hossley said...

The important thing is for McConnell so simply say no and leave it at that. It gives the democrats nothing new to talk about and eventually the media will grow tired of running the same story.

R. Chatt said...

Obama is recognizing that Hillary will be the nominee and she is a problematic candidate, to say the least. Probably a good idea to distract attention from her by directing attention to the Supreme Court and what might happen if a Republican wins the Presidency. So he will keep pushing for hearings on Judge Garland to rally the base.

An unintended consequence might be reminding people subliminally about the terrorist attack in Garland, TX and thus bringing up the question of who will better keep our country safe from terrorism. Maybe that's behind the sudden announcement by Kerry that ISIS is committing genocide. Or maybe Obama feels morally obligated to deal with Syria, and just has been waiting, to put dealing with ISIS on to the next administration. How much does politics factor into these decisions? LOL

Gahrie said...

If that's the point, I think it's hiding or missing the fact that going after Garland would make the Senators look bad,

Interesting point Althouse, and I agree with you. But why is this? Why was it OK for the Democrats to sabotage the Estrada nomination, which would have been historic? Why didn't they have to pay a price in the media and with the public? Why were the Democrats able to get away with their disgraceful treatment of Justice Thomas? How do you think the media and public would react if Republicans went after a Black nominee the way the Democrats did?

What is you diagnosis and solution to this question?

rcocean said...

Look, he shouldn't -under any circumstances - be confirmed before the election. Let the people decide.

Given that, it's stupid to even consider having hearings. Just shut up about it - Senators.

rcocean said...

We're only talking about it because the Republicans are such craven surrender monkeys. Even when they say they'll never give in, you always expect to backtrack and cave - for no reason.

That racist, asshole Trent Lott said he would give Gardner a hearing and a vote. But that's probably because someone paid him to say it.

buwaya said...

"Why didn't they have to pay a price in the media and with the public?"

Because the Democrats/leftists own the media. And every other institution that serves up opinions to the public, the result of Gramsci's long march through the institutions. Simple.

Hammond X. Gritzkofe said...

..Althouse: " If they had to do the hearings, they'd have to do it with accuracy and dignity, and then it would be hard to vote against the guy."

Why? If the Senate doesn't like the smell of his politics, don't Consent.

..But... But... But... Politics can't be considered for SCOTUS nominations.

That's in the Constitution somewhere?

..No, it's just tradition. Always been that way.

Oh. Got it. Like the traditional meaning of the word "marriage" being honored, or "accuracy and dignity" being honored in consideration of Judge Bork.

traditionalguy said...

The Obama/Reid argument is that Senators are breaking their oath to protect the Constitution from enemies.

But we just spent 7 long years being told the only remedy available for that case is Impeachment.

So who impeaches Congress. Other than the periodic elections. Congress has deferred to periodic elections on handling a Traitor President.

Paul said...

THERE WILL BE NO HEARINGS. NONE! Seven plus years this president has ignored the constitution. To late. He deserves to be shunned.

Let the next president pick.

AprilApple said...

replay that Joe Biden clip over and over and talk to the hand.

Theranter said...

http://www.wnd.com/2016/03/scalia-clerk-has-dire-warning-on-obama-supreme-court-pick/

http://www.westernjournalism.com/revealed-something-from-obamas-sc-nominees-past-will-enrage-republicans/

pm317 said...

I was hoping he would nominate that Indian-origin judge. You know we Indians have to stick together -- Indian lives matter.

Sam L. said...

Yup; same old same-old.

Drago said...

Amanda: " As for Trump who knows what he is, he isn't a true liberal, he isn't a true conservative, but he spews just the right amount of bigotry and fear that half of all conservatives seem to lap up like flies on shit. All you conservatives stood by while these destructive forces were wrecking your party..."

I'm sorry sweetheart but it's hard to hear you over your loud protestations of affection for the islamist who are murdering and sexually enslaving tens of thousands all over the globe.

Please do speak up a bit more next time, won't you?

There's a good lass.

Rhythm and Balls said...

But I find it hard to believe the American electorate has much interest in the subject.

So you admit the only reason for holding it up is the marching orders of their corporate donors?

holdfast said...

So apparently the outgoing chief of the DC Circuit is an accused rapist. Clinton appointee, naturally.

Michael K said...

"Bork was an arrogant asshole and ideologue"

You obviously knew him better than I did but my impression was always that he was brilliant and, unfortunately, open about his views. That set of hearings gave us the nomination of the people who never had an opinion in public, like Souter.

David said...

They have to demonstrate their own superiority and outrage. That's the point.

Persuasion grade: F. (Persuasion involves changing the thinking of the uncertain or opposed.)

James Pawlak said...

HOLD THE HEARINGS! Then apply the Democrat's "Robert Bork Rules"!

JAORE said...

"If they had to do the hearings, they'd have to do it with accuracy and dignity"

Because that's the way Bork was treated? (Gee did you know he bought a home where the land plat restricted Jews from ownership? Oh how the left howled when it was pointed out that Saint JFK had a similar clause on his deed. Damn near drove Teddy to drink.)

Obviously not. Yet the Republicans "have to"?

Why, oh my hostess would that be?

Perhaps because the Republicans are troops without benefit of media air cover? Or just the they have traditionally been more dignified than the left?

Mike said...

Janice Rogers Brown and Miguel Estrada weren't afforded any consideration either.

mikee said...

So a judge who voted to deny the 2nd Amendment right of DC citizens to keep a handgun in their home for self defense isn't an extremist? OK, got it. I will rewrite my definition of extremist once more to exclude that bit of extremism.

holdfast said...

@mikee - exactly. If this Judge has any sort of consistent legal philosophy, it's that the state is always right and the citizen should always be supine. He's a "moderate" because he applied that philosophy to the actions of the state even when GWB was President.

I can't think of a bigger"F U" to Scalia's legacy than replacing him with a judge from the lower court in Heller. FTG.