The crucial issue at stake in this election was the ability to select a Supreme Court Justice to fill the seat vacant due to the untimely and tragic loss of Antonin Scalia. [ARCHIVE ISSUE 22, #3]  

Had Hillary won, she would have fulfilled her pledge to appoint another pro-abort liberal to go with the four democrat appointed justices who vote in lockstep on all liberal issues. The result would have been that the democrats would never have to worry about the annoying duty of winning legislative votes. The liberal agenda would be “enacted” by the Court.


Once the democrats were in the majority, Harry Reid used the nuclear option to remove the phony 60 vote filibuster requirement so that a simple majority would prevail with one exception – the 60 vote rule would remain for the Supreme Court [ARCHIVE ISSUE 22, #1]  


In anticipation of Hillary’s victory, Reid planned to remove the 60 vote rule for the Supreme court so a simple majority would govern.  Reid believed the Republicans would be in the minority and he did not want them able to block Hillary’s nominee. He made no secret about it: I really do believe that I have set the Senate so when I leave, we’re going to be able to get judges done with a majority. It takes only a simple majority anymore. And, it’s clear to me that if the Republicans try to filibuster another circuit court judge, but especially a Supreme Court justice, I’ve told ‘em how and I’ve done it, not just talking about it. I did it in changing the rules of the Senate. It’ll have to be done again …They mess with the Supreme Court, it’ll be changed just like that in my opinion [Reid snapping his fingers together.] So I’ve set that up. I feel very comfortable with that. [Emphasis added.] The democrats have proven time and again that they will eliminate the 60 vote requirement whenever it might benefit the Republicans. [ARCHIVE ISSUE 22, #1] Yet, some RINO republicans have indicated they would not only keep the 60 vote requirement for the Supreme Court but return it for all nominees.  [ARCHIVE ISSUE 22, #2] This is INSANITY.If the GOP refuses to play by the same hardball rules we have nobody to blame but ourselves. Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer is an appropriate successor to Harry Reid. Both will say or do anything to achieve their ends, undeterred by truth, logic or decency. Without so much as acknowledging Reid’s promise to eliminate the 60 vote requirement for a Supreme Court justice had the democrats won, Schumer stated:It’s hard for me to imagine a nominee that Donald Trump would choose that would get Republican support that we could support,’… “They won’t have 60 votes to put in an out-of-the-mainstream nominee. N.B.The liberal definition of “mainstream” is unique – ACLU Ruth Ginsburg is “mainstream,” Roberts and Alito are not; abortion-on-demand is “mainstream” although 75% of Americans are against it.​
Schumer appeared with MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow on January 3. Maddow complained how unfair the republicans were by refusing to consider a nominee for the Court until after the election. Either she forgot, or never knew, that Joe Biden laid down the principle that presidents should not fill Supreme Court seats in the middle of an election year, and stated the democrats would stall any such attempt until after the next inauguration. In the interview, Schumer repeated: It’s hard for me to imagine a nominee that Donald Trump would choose that would get Republican support that we [democrats] could support.Where does that leave us? Schumer is saying Trump must agree to a democrat choice or, using the 60 vote rule, the democrats will leave the seat open indefinitely.  Asked if he would do his best to hold the seat open, Schumer responded, ‘Absolutely.[Emphasis added]   Schumer is counting on republicans to prevent the 60 vote rule from being changed to a majority.THIS IS THE BALLGAME. UNLESS ALL THE REPUBLICANS  VOTE TO ALLOW A MAJORITY VOTE FOR THE SUPREME COURT NOMINEE, AS HARRY REID PLANNED, THE MOST CRUCIAL ISSUE OF THE ELECTION WILL HAVE BEEN LOST. The SelectionIf the Republicans stand firm,  then the choice should be a good one in keeping with conservative principles. Eight names have surfaced as finalists including  two women candidates for the nomination. An earlier list included a third woman.  I think one of them should be chosen. There was disappointment for a significant segment of the electorate that a woman was not voted president.  The defeated candidate made much of a fictitious “war on women”. We know from past nominee hearings, the democrats, desperate to preserve abortion-on-demand, will be crying, however illogically, that it is a woman’s right.   It will be much more  difficult for the democrats to attack a woman nominee than a man. All three women have impressive credentials. Diane Sykes, 59
Judge, 7th Circuit Court of Appeals

A former justice of the Wisconsin Supreme Court, Sykes is considered to be near the top of Trump’s short list. She was part of a legal movement that helped set in motion a conservative transformation of the judiciary in her home state. Sykes was confirmed to the 7th Circuit in 2004 and was reportedly on Bush’s Supreme Court short list if a vacancy emerged in the last couple years of his second term. On the appeals court, she issued a decision compelling a state-run university to recognize a Christian legal group as an official school organization even though the group banned leaders engaged in homosexuality or “fornication.”


Sykes also voted to reinstate Wisconsin’s voter ID law just eight weeks before the 2014 general election. The Supreme Court reversed that decision by a 6-3 vote, but the justices allowed the law to take effect once that election was complete. Born in 1957…If nominated and confirmed in the coming months, she would be oldest successful nominee to make it on the court since President Clinton tapped 60-year-old Ruth Bader Ginsburg in 1993.


Criticism that Judge Sykes is not pro-life has been refuted.

 Joan Larsen, 48 Justice, Michigan Supreme Court Larsen is the youngest, offering conservatives the possibility of installing a justice who could serve for three decades. She also has the shortest judicial record of any of those considered finalists: She spent nearly all of her legal career as a law professor at the University of Michigan before being appointed to that state’s top court in September 2015, Larsen took leave from the university post to work in the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel from 2002 to 2003, as that office was producing controversial opinions backing interrogation techniques many view as torture, such as waterboarding. She said she was not involved in those highly-classified opinions, but she did sign a still-unreleased opinion about the rights of war-on-terror prisoners to challenge their detention in the courts.  A Northwestern law grad, Larsen clerked for Scalia and after his unexpected death in February, she wrote a New York Times op-ed describing the experience and his central philosophy. “Justice Scalia believed in one simple principle: That law came to the court as an is not an ought. Statutes, cases and the Constitution were to be read for what they said, not for what the judges wished they would say,” she wrote. Allison Eid, 51 Associate justice, Colorado Supreme Court. Colorado Governor Bill Owens appointed her to the seat in 2006; she was later retained for a full term by the voters (with 75% of voters favoring retention). Prior to her judicial service, Eid served as Colorado’s solicitor general and as a law professor at the University of Colorado. Eid attended the University of Chicago Law School, and she clerked for Justice Clarence Thomas. 

In response to the unfair and untrue attacks on the distinguished jurist, Robert Bork. 

Judge Bork had given us all a national lesson in our legal tradition and the importance of judicial restraint-the belief of our Founding Fathers that it was the role of the judge to interpret the law, not to preempt the rights of the people and their legislatures by making the law.

– Ronald Reagan   

Dick Coleman

Richard M. Coleman served as National Co-Chair, Lawyers for Reagan-Bush ’84 and really does miss RR. A graduate of Georgetown University and Harvard Law School, Dick is a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers, and a past president of the Los Angeles County Bar Association and of the National Caucus of Metropolitan Bar Leaders. A professor on the faculty of Pepperdine University’s Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution for 17 years, he received Pepperdine’s Excellence in Teaching Award. He has hosted TV forums on legal and financial topics and written and spoken extensively on political issues.

© Richard M. Coleman 2018