Header Ads

Liberals push for Justice Stephen Breyer, 82, to resign from Supreme Court after Mitch McConnell says he will BLOCK any Biden Supreme Court nomination during the 2024 election year if Republicans take back control

 Liberals are renewing their calls for 82-year-old Justice Stephen Breyer to resign so they can get some new blood in the Senate before the Republicans regain the majority after Minority Leader Mitch McConnell threatened to block every Biden nominee during the 2024 election year.

McConnell said on Hugh Hewitt's radio show Monday that he thought it was 'highly unlikely' that whichever party had the majority, 'would confirm a Supreme Court nominee in the middle of an election.'

His comment sparked panic among many Democrats who fear they could lose control of the Senate during next year's election.

Many have turned on Breyer who, at 82, they believe should retire to allow someone with more energy to take his place. The Justice had already found himself unpopular with liberals after previous remarks he gave suggesting court packing may be a bad idea.

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez said she is 'inclined to say yes' when asked on Sunday whether she thought Breyer could retire so that Biden could appoint a younger liberal to the Supreme Court.

'You know, it's something I thin about, but I would probably lean towards yes,' she said on CNN. 'I would give more thought to it, but I'm inclined to say yes.'

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell announced on Monday he would block President Joe Biden's Supreme Court nominee during an election year
Now, liberals are renewing their calls for Justice Stephen Breyer to resign

Liberals have renewed their calls for Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer to resign after Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said he would block President Joe Biden's Supreme Court nominee if the person was nominated in 2024, the next presidential election year

On Sunday, House Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez also said she is ¿inclined to say yes¿ when asked if Justice Stephen Breyer should retire so that President Joe Biden can appoint a younger liberal judge to the Supreme Court

On Sunday, House Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez also said she is ‘inclined to say yes’ when asked if Justice Stephen Breyer should retire so that President Joe Biden can appoint a younger liberal judge to the Supreme Court

Charlotte Clymer, a liberal activist, for example, wrote: 'Breyer needs to retire. Greatness in public service has to also mean knowing when it' time to pass the baton, and it's time.'

That tweet garnered about 2,300 likes by Monday evening, with others following suit.

About an hour later, Robert Cruickshank, the campaign director at Demand Progress, tweeted: 'If Breyer refuses to retire, he's not making some noble statement about the judiciary. He is saying he wants Mitch McConnell to hand-pick his replacement.' 

Keith Boykin, a CNN commentator, meanwhile wrote: 'Mitch McConnell will block any Biden nominee from the Supreme Court if Republicans control the Senate by 2024. Now tell Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema that bipartisanship is a lie and the filibuster must be eliminated. And tell Stephen Breyer to retire.'

Jon Favreau, a former speechwriter for President Barack Obama, said it 'Certainly feels good to yell online about this, but the only audience that really matters is Stephen Breyer, [Sen. Joe Manchin], [Sen. Kyrsten Sinema], and a handful of other Senate Dems who are hiding behind them,' referring to two Democratic senators who have spoken out against eliminating the filibuster. 'Anyone got a plan to persuade that crew?'

Matthew Yglesias, a former VOX writer, added: 'Justice Breyer is playing a reckless and irresponsible gamble with the future of hundreds of millions of people,' and Matthew Chapman, a breaking news reporter at Raw Story, said: 'Stephen Breyer has a responsibility to step down at the end of this term.' 

'He cannot enable this behavior from Republicans.'

Some in Congress have already called on Breyer to resign. In April, amid comments he made suggesting court packing could be a bad idea, New York Rep. Mondaire Jones, a Democrat, said he thought Breyer, the eldest member of the Supreme Court should resign, and on Monday he renewed those calls.

'When I became the first person in Congress to call for Justice Breyer to retire now, while President Biden can still appoint a successor, some people asked whether it was necessary,' he tweeted.

'Yes. Yes, it is.' 

Many liberals took to Twitter following McConnell's announcement to demand Breyer resign

Many liberals took to Twitter following McConnell's announcement to demand Breyer resign

Breyer first joined the bench under former President Bill Clinton in 1994 and is the oldest member of the Supreme Court.

In April, he came under fire for a lecture he gave at Harvard Law School, in which he said that packing the Supreme Court with more members may be a bad idea.

He said liberals who support the idea should think 'long and hard' about what they’re proposing, arguing that politically-driven change could diminish Americans' trust in the judicial system.

His talk, Breyer said, 'seeks to make those whose initial instincts may favor important structural (or other similar institutional) changes, such as forms of "court-packing," think long and hard before embodying those changes in law.' 

Mondaire Jones became the first person to ask for Breyer's resignation in April

 Mondaire Jones became the first person to ask for Breyer's resignation in April

While he has said nothing publicly about his plans, the speech could be read as a kind of farewell address, filled with calls for the public to view the justices as more than 'junior league politicians.'

He noted, for example, that despite the court’s conservative majority, the court in the past year refrained from getting involved in the 2020 election, delivered a victory to Louisiana abortion clinics and rejected former President Donald Trump’s effort to end legal protections for immigrants who were brought to the United States as children.

Breyer acknowledged that conservative views prevailed in other decisions.

'These considerations convince me that it is wrong to think of the Court as another political institution,' he said.


McConnell famously blocked President Barack Obama's (left) pick to replace Justice Antonin Scalia, Judge Merrick Garland (right), who now serves as President Joe Biden's Attorney General

McConnell famously blocked President Barack Obama's (left) pick to replace Justice Antonin Scalia, Judge Merrick Garland (right), who now serves as President Joe Biden's Attorney General 

McConnell, however, had no problem pushing through the nomination of Judge Amy Coney Barrett (right), a week before the election. She's photographed with then President Donald Trump (left) during her nomination ceremony on September 26, 2020

McConnell, however, had no problem pushing through the nomination of Judge Amy Coney Barrett (right), a week before the election. She's photographed with then President Donald Trump (left) during her nomination ceremony on September 26, 2020 

Barrett sworn in to the Supreme Court by Clarence Thomas
Loaded: 0%
Progress: 0%
0:00
Previous
Play
Skip
Mute
Current Time0:00
/
Duration Time1:49
Fullscreen
Need Text

In March 2016, former President Barack Obama announced he had chosen Merrick Garland to fill a seat left vacant by the late Antonin Scalia, nearly nine months before voters headed to the polls.

But, as Senate Majority Leader, McConnell refused to give now Attorney General Merrick Garland, a vote, because it was during a presidential election year.  

Then, in 2020, when liberal Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg passed away in September, now former President Donald Trump swiftly picked Judge Amy Coney Barrett to take her place.

Against Ginsburg's dying wishes, the Republican-controlled Senate confirmed Barrett to the bench on October 27, one week before the presidential election. 

McConnell and the Senate Republicans have defended their actions pointing out that in 2016 party control of the White House and Senate was split, whereas in 2020, the same party, the Republicans, controlled both.      

'What was different in 2020 was we were of the same party as the president. And that's why we went ahead with it,' McConnell said. 

On the show Monday, McConnell said holding open Scalia's seat - so the late justice was eventually replaced by Trump with conservative Justice Neil Gorsuch - was 'the single most consequential thing I've done in my time as majority leader of the Senate.'   

Conservatives now hold a 6-3 majority on the high court. 

McConnell wouldn't say what he would do if, for example, liberal Justice Stephen Breyer retired at the end of the 2023 court session, and Republicans retook the majority after the 2022 midterms.    

'Well, we'd have to wait and see what happens,' the Kentucky Republican said. 

Hewitt told McConnell he was worried about some of the Republicans jumping into Senate primaries in states the GOP needs to hold on to if there's any chance of becoming the majority party again next year.  

Hewitt warned 'unelectable Republicans' could lose the GOP 'easily defended seats.'

McConnell answered, 'yes, if necessary,' he would get involved if it looked like someone who didn't appeal to a general election audience was poised to win.   

'You have to appeal to the general election audience,' McConnell said. 

'I'll be keeping an eye on that, hopefully we won't have to intervene, but if we do, we will,' the minority leader added.    

No comments