Merrick Garland has refrained from giving high profile speeches since he became Attorney General, preferring to simply do his job rather than publicly posturing. But his silence has allowed procedural court filings – and a number of really cranky liberal pundits – to write his story for him. Now that’s changing today.
Garland is giving a major speech this afternoon about how he and the Department of Justice intend to take specific legal steps to protect the voting rights of all Americans. It sounds a lot like he’s going to announce legal action against the red states that have passed blatantly unconstitutional voter suppression laws thus far this year.
This will be a huge swing for Garland, because he’ll be trying fix the voting rights mess through the court system that Congress is still struggling to fix through legislation. It’s Garland’s responsibility to go this route, as the DOJ has a legal duty to challenge the actions of states that it feels are unconstitutional. It’ll also prove to be very popular with liberal activists, who have been demanding that “somebody do something” about voting rights.
Of course Merrick Garland’s speech today very likely won’t address why the DOJ has made a series of procedural court filings that have been interpreted by liberal activists as protecting Donald Trump and Bill Barr. In reality these court filings may be mere formalities, as the judge in each instance is likely to rule against the DOJ anyway. But with Garland now about to very publicly tackle voting rights and voter suppression, this should take the heat off him long enough for us to all find out where he really stands on bringing the previous regime to justice.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report