If the Senate confirms Amy Coney Barrett, five members of the Supreme Court will have been selected by a President who initially won the White House while losing the popular vote. https://t.co/vj8QNji31t
— The New Yorker (@NewYorker) September 26, 2020
Writes John Cassidy:
If the aftermath of Ginsburg’s untimely death has taught us anything, it’s that the antiquated institutions of American democracy are in urgent need of repair—that is, if the country can get through the next couple of months with these institutions still intact, which at times this week hasn’t always seemed like a given. The alternative to wholesale reform is almost too ghastly to contemplate: the continuation and intensification of a years-long effort to consolidate minority rule. For, when you strip away all the diversions and disinformation, that is the project that the Republican Party and the forty-fifth President are engaged in.
Think about it.
A majority of the U.S. Supreme Court seems likely to be selected by a president who didn’t carry the popular vote.
The Republican majority of the U.S. Senate was elected by fewer people than elected by the minority Democratic senators.
The Electoral College. Enough said.
Two senators for the 579,000 people of Wyoming. Two senators for the 39.5 million people of California. Thus the maps beloved by Republicans of vast swaths of lightly populated counties that vote red.
Remember when Republicans unified behind the 10-month block of Merrick Garland’s nomination under the slogan “Let the people decide”?
They never intended then or ever to let the people decide. They can’t risk it. So they won’t, maybe even Nov. 3.
This is just the current anti-democratic outrage. When you consider the combined influence of the Electoral College and the Senate, both of which amplify the power of Republican voters living in less densely populated parts of the country, the empowerment of the minority—an overwhelmingly white and conservative minority—goes far beyond this instance, egregious as it is.