Right-wing pundit Mychal Massie said this week that, while he’s been among those conservatives who have not been “doing backflips” over the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court, he is coming to see the nomination as evidence that “President Trump is a genius at playing chess while others are playing checkers with Barney Fife in the Mayberry courthouse.
Massie’s epiphany was sparked by a column by Erick Erickson focused on Kavanaugh’s ardent opposition to restrictions on guns.
Ask yourself what part of the Constitution is under threat the most at this very moment and for the foreseeable future? It is the Second Amendment. Suppose President Trump views Kavanaugh as a mostly safe swing vote Justice. Suppose he feels that chances are Kavanaugh will swing right perhaps 75 percent of the time. That amounts to slightly better than an even wash with Kennedy in my reasoning.
However, suppose in addition to that Kavanaugh is a bulwark on the Second Amendment. That means in theory that our rights under the Second Amendment would be safe for the foreseeable future, all things being equal. The next seat most likely to open on the Court is that of Ginsburg and from the looks of it, she will go out on a gurney with a toe-tag. Ergo, the hypercritical nomination for President Trump is the next one. It is the next nomination that can shape the SCOTUS for decades and generations to come. The Kavanaugh selection is important but as my good friend said to me the evening of Kavanaugh’s nomination: “Trump has made a perfect chess move. This guy will certainly be confirmed and be on our side when it counts. Republicans pick up a few more seats and it is off to the races…I trust Trump’s ability to get to the winning final move…In any event we are far better off than had HRC won. We are in God’s hands.” This is why it is critical that we pick up more dependable seats in the Senate.
Massie quotes from Erickson’s article:
Democrats in red states are being forced to choose between a pro-second amendment judge and angry leftists.
There is a large contingent of conservatives muttering overnight about Kavanaugh and Roe. A good number don’t think he’ll be much better than Kennedy on that issue and are only prevented from going off the ledge by Democrat screams about Kavanaugh and Roe. Some are already privately bitching that Kavanaugh’s nomination sets back the pro-life cause, but they still recognize he’ll be better than Kennedy on many issues. The wailing of the left is providing comfort for those on the right who are not reassured Kavanaugh is right enough.
But the relevant issue here is guns matter, and President Trump knows it. Kavanaugh authored an opinion in the second review of the Heller case at the appellate level, and both Clarence Thomas and Antonin Scalia embraced his reasoning.
Kavanaugh is an intellectual standard-bearer for the right to keep and bear arms.
There are now more handguns owned in the United States by private citizens than there are private citizens. The armory of the American people is larger than the armory of the American military. For the past year, a growing number of Democrats have become ever more vocal about curtailing gun rights.
Erickson says that voting against Kavanaugh “will be akin to voting for a rollback of the Second Amendment,” and that Democratic senators from red states who vote against his confirmation will “have hell to pay from pro-gun voters in their states who are increasingly voting on guns as a single issue in response to the left’s radicalism.” Adds Erickson, “If they don’t oppose him, they’ll have hell to pay from the left. Good luck with that, Democrats.”
Back to Massie:
Which brings me back to why it is the next pick President Trump makes that will be the most crucial for decades. On the next pick there can be no soft-centers. We need a bulldog like the late Justice Scalia, Justice Thomas or Justice Alito. Because after that, speaking in theory mind you, even if a liberal or progressive president makes an appointment to the “Bench,” the count will still be 6 to 3 favoring Constructionism and/or Originalism, with 5 to 4 favoring same depending on how Kavanaugh votes on certain issues.