The Reverend


Nevada GOP caucus results are as follows.....



Trump 45.9

Rubio 23.9

Cruz 21.4

Carson 4.8

Kasich 3.6



That 45.9% is note worthy. That is the highest percentage of votes Trump has received thus far. The Donald was awarded 12 delegates, Rubio and Cruz 5 each. Dems primary on Saturday in South Carolina....then on to Super Tuesday.



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Yesterday, Mitch McConnell and his neo-confederate brethren in the Senate made a decision on what to do about replacing Scalia's seat on the Supreme Court. In effect, the GOP Senate leadership decided that it was time to do away with one of the three branches of the U.S. federal government....altogether.



Yes, I will explain.



Mitchy, after careful deliberation and contemplation I can assure you, announced that the Senate would not entertain ANY Obama nominee to replace Scalia. No Judiciary Committee hearings....no nothing. Obama can nominate any damn person he wants to.....the Senate will simply ignore it, as if it never happened.



This is precedent setting, naturally....but I think it is even worse than that. Let's say for the sake of saying....that Hillary becomes the next president but Republicans still hold a slim majority in the Senate. Why couldn't Mitchy's Senate simply refuse to consider ANY Hillary nominees to the Supreme Court?



The 8 Justices could carry on as they are doing right now....until another Justice passes, and then another....each time Senate Republicans refusing to consider ANY Hillary replacement nominees. Who, or what, would stop them from doing so?



Oh, you might be thinking, Republicans wouldn't do anything like that. Wouldn't they? You see, a Hillary nominee to replace Scalia would also change the bias of the Court....yes, the Court is biased politically....tilting it into a 5-4 progressive Court. Republicans and conservatives are refusing to entertain an Obama nominee for fear of that very outcome. Why would the Hell-No'ers regard a Hillary nominee any differently?



They wouldn't.



The Notorious RBG....Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg...is 82 and has been battling a form of cancer. Justice Anthony Kennedy is 79 years old. So, it is possible that during a Hillary first term, Republicans could reduce the size of the Supreme Court down to 6 members simply by doing what they plan to do with ANY Obama nominee to replace Scalia this year. Again, what would stop them?



Consider this.....



The Constitution places the power to determine the number of Justices in the hands of Congress. The first Judiciary Act, passed in 1789, set the number of Justices at six, one Chief Justice and five Associates. Over the years Congress has passed various acts to change this number, fluctuating from a low of five to a high of ten. The Judiciary Act of 1869 fixed the number of Justices at nine and no subsequent change to the number of Justices has occurred.



Seems clear. Congress decides how many Justices should sit on the Court. A GOP-controlled Senate, then, could decide, through attrition, to, basically, nullify the Court as long as a Democratic president held office. What? You expect that calmer and cooler heads will prevail? Yes, it would take time for Justices to die off....and absolutely a Republican refusal to replace ANY Justice would be a risky game plan.....but so what?



The question to consider is whether today's GOP would do virtually anything to maintain conservative control of one, or all, of the three branches of government. I think the answer to that important question is...yes. Close down the federal government, check.....come within an eyelash of defaulting on federal debt, check....set obstruction and filibuster records in the Senate, check.....invite a foreign leader to address Congress to disparage a sitting United States president. check.....conspire to reduce Democratic vote totals in state-held elections, check. So, what WOULDN'T Republicans do in the hope of salvaging their miserable political party?



Of course Republicans think they can take the presidency in November and that is why they are stonewalling on Scalia's replacement. But if they are wrong, and there is a good possibility that they are, then what? Virtually any Hillary nominee would tip the Court in favor of the progressives. Will Republicans in 2017 allow that to happen? Should Democrats retake control of the Senate AND Hillary is elected president....again, a possibility.....will minority-Republicans in the Senate obstruct and filibuster said Hillary nominee? And how long would Senate Republicans block a Hillary nominee from receiving a Senate up-or-down vote? Six months? One year? Until after the 2018 midterms? Three years?



Once one of only two political parties decides to stop the American democratic process until they get what they want.....all bets are off. That is where we are right now. Republicans, with one eye on near-term demographic projections, have conspired together to game-out the American democratic process. Wherever they can find a "loophole" in the system, they exploit it, abuse it,.....as they have proven with voter-ID laws in search of non-existent in person, voter fraud.



Though unlikely, I could very easily see Senate Republicans blocking all Supreme Court nominations coming from a Democratic president from now on. Which could result in, over time, a Court with 6 members....5 members.....hell, maybe even 3 members.



Finally.....have you come up with a viable option that would prevent the Supreme Court from being decimated....if that is what Republicans decide to do?



Because apart from throwing the GOP bums out....I don't see one.