Op-ed: Senator Lee, Merrick Garland belongs on Supreme Court, not at the FBI

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  • Thomas Thompson SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    May 20, 2017 8:47 a.m.

    Merrick Garland has publicly stated he has no interest in being our Attorney General. Why not take him at his word?

  • HaHaHaHa Othello, WA
    May 19, 2017 1:12 p.m.

    "I would also remind you that Trump voters do not represent a majority, so there's no basis for them speaking as if their voice represents the desire of the nation as a whole. This is objectively untrue."

    If majority is the standard, then hitlary voters don't represent the desire of the nation either. She may have received he most votes, but she didn't get more then half. The rules are the rules. We don't just allow california to decide who the next president is, so move on. Everyone did what they had to do. Bho did his thing, the senate did their thing, and Trump did his part. It all worked out, and if the election would have gone another way, so would the SC appointment. How much longer is are we going to have to put up with this sour grapes syndrome? There are literally dozens of other candidates who were just as qualified as Gorsuch or Garland, but the process played out and now it's over. Rules were followed and life goes on. Grow up.

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    May 19, 2017 10:45 a.m.

    RE: "Party-of-impeachment"...
    ---
    Democrats are the party-of-impeachment. Democrats have written up articles of impeachment for every REPUBLICAN President in my lifetime. Every one. They didn't spare one Republican. Including Ronald Reagan.

    Don't believe me... Google "Impeachment investigations of United States federal officials" (Wikipedia)...
    Go to "Presidents" list.

    Clinton is on the list.
    But Democrats submitted articles of impeachment for:
    -Richard M. Nixon
    -Ronald Reagan
    -George H. W. Bush
    -George W. Bush
    -Donald Trump

    EVERY Republican elected President (in my lifetime).

    Is that weird to anybody else?

    Democrats have tried to impeach every President (in my lifetime) except those of their party...

    Is anybody surprised it's their plan yet again?

    I wonder if they realize it doesn't put a Democrat in office. Mostly just messes with the guy in office and makes sure he, the media, and the public, are distracted by their impeachment antics, making it hard for the President (and the country) to get anything done.

    So maybe Republicans are the party-of-no. But Democrats are surely the party-of-impeachment.

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    May 18, 2017 3:11 p.m.

    Vermonter is right.

    Those in the media are so, so, so, eager to find something negative about Trump every day. Every day. They feel the need to prove they were right, and voters were wrong.

    I have to admit he gives them a lot to talk about. Some of it's his fault. But they would find something negative every day no matter what. It's their obsession. It's their full time job now (to bring Trump down one way or another).

    And Democrats are on the same team. They pose for the cameras every night and talk about the latest scandal the media reported today (whether it's real or not).

    I'm pretty sure sooner or later at least one of these scandals the NY Times has reported are going to turn out to be true. I predict that Trump will not stay in office till the end of his full term, one way or another. The tenacious attack from the Press and the Democrats is too much for anybody to stand for 4 years IMO. I would have quit by now. Nobody needs a job that bad. Especially Trump. He has lots of options.

    The media is after the President, there's no doubt about it. And Democrats... That's automatic. They are not only the party-of-no... they are the party-of-impeachment

  • Karen R. Houston, TX
    May 18, 2017 12:11 p.m.

    @ 2 bits

    "But I have to admit that I'm glad they didn't get to take advantage of Justice Scala's unfortunate and untimely death...it's a big deal to lose one of your guys on the court and have them replaced by the other side."

    Thank you, 2 bits. This kind of honesty is like oxygen to me.

    "The founder's theory was that if Justices didn't have to face elections they wouldn't be partisan. But that hasn't worked out."

    We elect judges here in Texas, including Supreme Court justices, and oh my goodness the conflicts of interest it creates.

    I'm all right with lifetime appointments for appellate courts and above. IMO we just need to agree that they shouldn't ever be allowed to lean too far in any one direction because of the length of time they can be expected to serve. Of course, that requires our politicians feeling safe to act in the best interests of all. This isn't the case right now. We're demanding that they be partisan (or they're already partisan on their own).

    IMO, getting back to longer term, what's best for all decision-making would go along on this issue.

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    May 18, 2017 11:13 a.m.

    I see why Democrats are upset. They have reason to be upset. But I have to admit that I'm glad they didn't get to take advantage of Justice Scala's unfortunate and untimely death.

    With how politicized the courts are today... it's a big deal to lose one of your guys on the court and have them replaced by the other side.

    I know it shouldn't be that way... but it is. It shouldn't matter which President appoints them... but it does.

    The founder's theory was that if Justices didn't have to face elections they wouldn't be partisan. But that hasn't worked out. Especially today.

    Supreme Court Justices are just as partisan as politicians today. Maybe they should have to face elections, so we can throw them out when WE want to, instead of having to wait until they die and then have no voice/vote.

    This is the one branch of government that doesn't have to face the people or report to the people regularly. The only people we can't throw out if they are out of touch.

    There was a good reason for that, which works in political theory... but not in today's highly politicized reality.

    Maybe we should get to vote justices in/out every few years.

  • Irony Guy Bountiful, Utah
    May 18, 2017 10:24 a.m.

    Mike Lee wants Garland off the federal bench so he can fill the slot with another right-wing judge.

  • Karen R. Houston, TX
    May 18, 2017 10:15 a.m.

    @ JoeCapitalist2

    "I can certainly see how Democrats are upset about Garland not being on the SCOTUS..."

    This kind of sidesteps the real issue, which is exhibiting contempt for the process, but blaming this on another. And "but we won" avoids the issue all together. I would also remind you that Trump voters do not represent a majority, so there's no basis for them speaking as if their voice represents the desire of the nation as a whole. This is objectively untrue.

  • JoeCapitalist2 Orem, UT
    May 18, 2017 8:35 a.m.

    Karen R.: "McConnell's gambit was a cynical and ruthless application of party before country. I'm confident you'd feel just as Dems do if the shoe were on the other foot. In fact, you may be thinking of some examples as you read this."

    I can think of hundreds of examples where the Dems put party before country and their supporters like you didn't think twice about it. I am also confident that when the 'shoe is on the other foot' that all the liberals screaming about this issue would take the opposite stance.

    I can certainly see how Democrats are upset about Garland not being on the SCOTUS, but as Obama once said: "Elections have consequences". It is probably the main reason I voted for Trump along with enough other voters to actually win the election.

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    May 18, 2017 6:42 a.m.

    To "Hutterite " if you have to ask why Garland was not appointed, you have not paid any attention to the news for the last 18 months. Garland was not picked because Congress didn't want him. That is it.

    To "Esquire" tell us where in the Constitution it states that congress has a timeframe for voting on any nominee or that any nominee must be vetted.

    To "RJohnson" yes, the ACA was rammed through. What would you call it when the final vote is avoided by using Reconciliation? Also, what would you call a bill that was voted on purely on party lines?

  • JoeBlow Far East USA, SC
    May 18, 2017 5:51 a.m.

    Any honorable, self respecting person would have to think long and hard before taking a job under Trump. Especially one that has any oversight of the actions of the POTUS.

    Loyalty pledge? Interference in investigations?

    Not a job for the ethical.

  • Karen R. Houston, TX
    May 18, 2017 5:28 a.m.

    @ Vermonter and the so-called Biden Rule

    McConnell's gambit was a cynical and ruthless application of party before country. I'm confident you'd feel just as Dems do if the shoe were on the other foot. In fact, you may be thinking of some examples as you read this.

    So, please. Let's stop with what is IMO the insulting, contempt-filled tactic of blaming another for our own actions. Let's have the courage of our convictions and own our stuff.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    May 17, 2017 9:54 p.m.

    Ya --
    How dumb do you think we are?

    Move Merrick Garland to the FBI,
    free up a Federal Court seat --

    Trump can then fill it with whomever the GOP wants,
    Trump then FIRES Merrick Garland at the FBI like James Comey.
    baddah-boom, baddah-bing!

    GOP problem - solved.
    ala New York Mafia hit job, fashion.

  • Vermonter Plymouth, MI
    May 17, 2017 9:21 p.m.

    @Tyler D.
    If you are as disgusted by the Garland obstruction as you say you are, where is your call for an amendment to the Constitution so that this can never happen again. And where are the Democrats and Joe Biden calling for such an amendment.

    No, it seems Democrats are not really offended by the Biden Rule or tactic. They are only seem to be offended because Republicans dared to use the tactic against their president, and decided to let the America people judge the wisdom of the Republican obstruction of the Garland nomination.

    It appears the American people were not as offended as the Democrats seem to be.

    Thanks for the dialogue.

  • the greater truth Bountiful, UT
    May 17, 2017 8:18 p.m.

    Garland is not on the supreme court because extremist leftists/liberals like sotomayor, kagan and ginsberg.

    The democrats have only themselves to blame because of the extreme left nominations they did have and for not nominating more centrist or moderate judges.

    Don't go blaming the other side else. It just ain't so.

  • RJohnson Salt Lake City, UT
    May 17, 2017 6:56 p.m.

    @NoNamesAccepted

    "The liberals need to move on."

    Not a chance. Why weren't you and likeminded "conservatives" moving on in 2008? 2012? Where was your conciliatory requests then?

    "Garland is not on the Supreme Court"

    Because obstructionist "conservatives", the ones who refused to move on in 2008 and 2012, shamefully poiticized the process--so much so they even suggested that Had Clinton won the Whitehouse, the SCOTUS would permanently have only 8 justices.

    "after democrats rammed through Obamacare."

    Rammed through? It took almost two years to get the ACA into law. What were Democrats ramming with? Q-Tips?

  • NoNamesAccepted St. George, UT
    May 17, 2017 6:05 p.m.

    The liberals need to move on.

    Garland is not on the Supreme Court because the American voters wisely returned control of the US Senate to the GOP after democrats rammed through Obamacare.

    The US constitution specifies that the President appoints members of the Supreme Court but only with the "advice and consent" of the Senate. It does not set a timetable in which the Senate must act, just as it doesn't actually require the President to nominate someone acceptable to the majority of senators.

    The entire process is, and always has been political. These days, it is hyper-partisan and has been ever since Democrats invented the notion of "borking" a candidate they don't like.

    Liberals are not entitled to shift the court to the left, nor to even have liberal majority courts.

    By not seating Garland, and then confirming Gorsuch, the GOP has merely maintained the status quo on the bench.

    If Trump were to get the chance to nominate another Originalist or Conservative to replace Kennedy or Gingsburg, that would actually shift the court. How hysterical will leftists be if that happens?

  • Tyler D Prescott, AZ
    May 17, 2017 3:39 p.m.

    @Vermonter – “The reason Garland is not on the Supreme Court is something called the Biden Rule.”

    Hilarious!

    How does comment by one Senator (who was not the majority leader) 25 years ago suddenly become a “rule” and fully weaponized by the entire Republican Party?

    Party over country, right? You guys are shameless…

  • Vermonter Plymouth, MI
    May 17, 2017 9:42 a.m.

    @Esquire.
    As for the existence of the Biden Rule, you might try Google. I know people have various opinions of it. But, there is no denying Biden created the idea of obstructing and delaying any action on a president's judicial nominations during an election year. I'm not saying its good or bad. I'm just acknowledging that there is a Biden Rule and that in 1992, Joe Biden was the first person to talk favorably about using such a tactic.

    As for keeping Garland on the DC Circuit Court, I think you are right. This is as hyper-political an atmosphere as I ever remember. The Democrats know where they have power, and they are going to protect it to the point of telling Garland what he will and will not do.

  • There You Go Again St George, UT
    May 17, 2017 9:32 a.m.

    The Honorable Merrick Garland has a lifetime job.

    Whomever is appointed as the FBI Director will serve at the pleasure of a reality show host.

    The Honorable Merrick Garland has dealt with the Dishonorable re-Publican Cartel/Machine.

    No need to go there again.

  • Esquire Springville, UT
    May 17, 2017 9:21 a.m.

    @ Vermonter, there is no such thing as the Biden Rule, and it has never been used until the Republicans spit on the Constitution in the Garland nomination.

  • Esquire Springville, UT
    May 17, 2017 9:18 a.m.

    The idea of Garland at the FBI is a scam to get him off the DC Court of Appeals so Trump can put his own person in there. Don't be fooled.

  • Vermonter Plymouth, MI
    May 17, 2017 8:40 a.m.

    @Impartial. @hutterite.
    The reason Garland is not on the Supreme Court is something called the Biden Rule. The Biden Rule is good if one is obstructing a president you don't like, bad if the opposition is obstructing a president you like. Its just the way things are.

    If enough Americans are mad about it, we can always amend the Constitution to force Congress to act within a certain period of time. But, until that happens, the Constitution allows for the use of the Biden Rule.

    BTW, if things work out right, Democrats might be able to use this tactic against a Trump nominee in 2019 and 2020. They just need to win back the House and the Senate. Democrats must concentrate on that goal first.

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    May 17, 2017 7:50 a.m.

    I think the good senator, and all of his colleagues, still owes the nation an explanation as to why Garland does not have a court seat today. An explanation for which they could somehow be held accountable.

  • Impartial7 DRAPER, UT
    May 17, 2017 7:43 a.m.

    Bingo! Anytime Lee does or says anything, you need to look a little deeper. Lee's motivation to appoint Garland, who Lee refused to even hold a hearing for SC, isn't because he thinks Garland would make a competent FBI director. It was, as the article states, an attempt to get Garland off the Court so Lee and his Tea Party cohorts can get another right wing extremist on the bench.

  • Vermonter Plymouth, MI
    May 17, 2017 7:25 a.m.

    This is beating a dead horse. There are arguments to be made on both sides. Neither is right or wrong. This is simply the way America's constitutional republican democracy works.

    But, heaven forbid Trump nominates one of the "good guys" to be FBI Director. Republicans are trying to be bi-partisan. But, Garland doesn't want the position. Like Heidi Heitkamp and Tulsi Gabbard before, Garland has likely been warned not to have anything to do with the Trump Administration. At this point, Democrats are way beyond the "party of no." And some of them are seriously waiting for Trump to be impeached and convicted, or to have him resign.

    I am not a Trump supporter. But, Democrats and their allies in the media are just a tad too eager and gleeful with every Trump mis-step, perceived or real--and it appears most of them are only perceived by unnamed, anonymous sources.