Imagine Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett being asked this question: “Does the president of the United States have the power to take your guns away from you?” I can easily imagine how anything short of an unequivocal “No!” would be met with howls of outrage from NRA-funded Republicans on the Senate Judiciary Committee, not even to mention the loud but virulent minority of gun fetishists across America.
Now, imagine Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett being asked this question: “Does the president of the United States have the power to take your vote away from you?” Imagine no more. Judge Barrett was asked that essential question by ranking member California Senator Diane Feinstein, and Barrett’s answer was an unequivocal, uncompromising “Maybe.”
Senator Feinstein’s actual question went like this: “Does the Constitution give the president of the United States the authority to unilaterally delay a general election under any circumstances?” To which Barrett replied, “Well, Senator, if that question ever came before me, I would need to hear arguments from the litigants and read briefs and consult with my law clerks and talk to my colleagues and go through the opinion-writing process.”
Now, I’m not a lawyer, and, as such, I hate having to give advice to a sitting Court of Appeals Judge, but the question of whether or not the Constitution gives the president of the United States the authority to unilaterally delay a general election under any circumstances is, “No!”
This is not a question to ponder with your law clerks or hear arguments from litigants about. This one is easy. The answer is that nowhere in the Constitution is the president of the United States given the authority to delay a general election. Period. Just like, nowhere in the Constitution is the president of the United States given the authority to outlaw Christmas. It’s just not there, and if a Supreme Court nominee is refusing to say otherwise, then I submit she has something to hide.
Naturally, the question of whether or not any POTUS has the authority to delay an election wouldn’t normally even come up had Donald Trump not suggested it in a tweet. And I quote from a 30 July, 2020 Donald Trump tweet:
“With Universal Mail-in Voting (not Absentee Voting, which is good), 2020 will be the most INACCURATE & FRAUDULENT Election in history. It will be a great embarrassment to the USA. Delay the election until people can properly, securely and safely vote???”
Article II of the United States Constitution specifically gives the authority to set the date of a general election to Congress, not the president, but to Congress, and a federal law passed in 1845 fixed that date as the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November. Any nominee for the Supreme Court who doesn’t know that should be instantly disqualified. Any nominee for the Supreme Court who pretends she doesn’t know that should likewise be instantly disqualified. Either way, Judge Barrett has disqualified herself.
While we’re in the neighborhood, the Twentieth Amendment of the Constitution of the United States also says this: “Section 1. The terms of the President and Vice President shall end at noon on the 20th day of January …” I can’t help but wonder if Judge Barrett was also handpicked by Donald Trump and his White House of pirates and conmen because her amnesia also extends to the Twentieth Amendment of the Constitution.
Three years out of law school Amy Coney Barrett joined the legal team that oversaw the handing over of the presidency to George W. Bush when they put a stop to the vote recount effort in Florida. Her career began with the auspicious usurpation of the power of Americans to lawfully choose their president. It cannot come as a surprise to anyone that she’s still on that mission today, provided, of course, that the president in question is Republican and supports her private notions about what a woman may or may not do with her own body.
Trump picked Amy Coney Barrett to mollify his evangelical base, to overturn the Affordable Care Act and because he hopes she supports the notion that he can tinker with the 2020 election. That is why Barrett is a toxic choice and that is why she is being picked at precisely this time.
There are a million reasons why Donald Trump is unfit to be president of the United States, this has been another one. Only we can stop this monster from destroying America. It’s up to us, so vote. And, as ever, ladies and gentlemen, brothers and sisters, comrades and friends, stay safe.