October 22, 2020

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Win on court pick, fumble on election results

President Trump ended his week with his pick of federal judge Amy Coney Barrett, a move that buoyed conservatives and made liberals so furious they are considering boycotting her confirmation hearing.



Donald Trump wearing a suit and tie: Judge Amy Coney Barrett speaks after President Donald Trump announced Barrett as his nominee to the Supreme Court, in the Rose Garden at the White House Saturday.


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Judge Amy Coney Barrett speaks after President Donald Trump announced Barrett as his nominee to the Supreme Court, in the Rose Garden at the White House Saturday.

But while the pick was a big win for the president’s base, his suggestions earlier questioning the upcoming election and results overshadowed his week.

Conservative grader Jed Babbin noted the president’s questions about the election process but said Trump deserves an “A-” for his court pick to replace the late liberal Supreme Court Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. But Democratic pollster and grader John Zogby said Trump’s suggestion that he wouldn’t accept an election loss to Joe Biden stained the week, resulting in a grade of “F.”

Jed Babbin

Grade: A-

This was a very good week for President Trump with the Supreme Court nomination of 7th Circuit Judge Amy Coney Barrett, the declaration of “anarchist” jurisdictions, cities to which federal aid would be reduced, and marred — as usual — by his own words.

The Saturday nomination of Barrett sets the stage for a confirmation battle that will make the Democrat’s performance in the Brett Kavanaugh Supreme Court confirmation hearings seem like a high school dance. Barrett is a solid conservative, a judicial superstar and a religious Catholic. She’s only 48 and — with Associate Justices Samuel Alito, Neil Gorsuch, Kavanaugh and Clarence Thomas (and sometimes Chief Justice John Roberts) the court could be conservative by 6-3 votes. Barrett’s confirmation to the Circuit Court was marred by some voicing their anti-Catholic bias and this will be much, much worse in every respect. The Democrats only care about the future of Roe v. Wade, the 1973 abortion decision that still haunts American politics. They’ll probably won’t be able to stop Barrett’s confirmation, but it’s going to be a bloody process.

The Justice Department ruled that cities such as Portland, Ore., and Seattle, Wash., — in which local governors and mayors have refused to put down the riots that have plagued those cities for almost four months — were anarchist and thus going to have their slices of the federal aid pie cut. It was a good move that these cities and states deserve. Governments have the duty to protect their citizens from violence. Those jurisdictions could have but chose not to.

As usual, what could have been a perfect week was marred by the president refusing — twice — to say that if he lost the election there would be a peaceful transfer of power. It was an easy shot that Trump missed by a mile, feeding a media frenzy.

John Zogby

Grade: F

So we started the week with the passing of Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg and an unexpected opening on the high court. President Trump has the votes in the Senate and a win is a win.

It makes no difference whether I agree with Trump or not. (I don’t). And I hate the reality that truth, democracy, and morality have become situational and partisan. Fact is Trump has the votes and will most likely dominate the Supreme Court until 2040. That is democracy, I guess, although each side gets to define their own sense of what is real and what is not.

The president was going to get a good grade until Thursday, when he refused again to concede to Joe Biden if he doesn’t win reelection. That is not not just troubling, it is downright outrageous. I cannot see how that could possibly pass the smell test among the women and older voters he needs desperately to win. But again he dominated the discourse and won the condemnation of his party’s leaders. Thursday cancels the early week.

Jed Babbin is a Washington Examiner contributor and former deputy undersecretary of defense in the administration of former President George H.W. Bush. Follow him on Twitter @jedbabbin

John Zogby is the founder of the Zogby Poll and senior partner at John Zogby Strategies. His weekly podcast with son and partner Jeremy Zogby can be heard here. Follow him on Twitter @TheJohnZogby

Tags: Washington Secrets, Joe Biden, 2020 Elections, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Amy Coney Barrett, Supreme Court

Original Author: Paul Bedard

Original Location: White House Report Card: Win on court pick, fumble on election results

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