Moments after Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy’s retirement announcement Wednesday, the Democratic party sent out a fundraising email with the subject line: “If you steal a Supreme Court seat, you can do just about anything.”
The email from Deputy DNC Chair Keith Ellison (D-MN) decried the Supreme Court’s 5-4 decision Tuesday to uphold President Trump’s travel ban, comparing it to the infamous Dred Scott decision.
“The Supreme Court in the 1850s said that it was OK to own a black person, and that was the Dred Scott decision,” he wrote. “That decision hit the dustbin of history -- and the decision to uphold Trump's Muslim ban will too.”
The email claimed that the GOP “thinks that because they stole a Supreme Court seat and gave themselves a 5-4 majority, they can jam any racist, xenophobic, ugly policy down the throats of the American people.”
The claim that Republicans "stole" a Supreme Court seat likely refers to the confirmation of Justice Neil Gorsuch through the GOP employing the "nuclear option" to avoid a partisan filibuster as well as Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell's declining to fill the vacancy left by Scalia's death during the election year.
“Republicans think there are no consequences for stealing a Supreme Court seat,” the email emphasized.
Audio of the DNC committee learning about Kennedy’s retirement on a conference call was tweeted by Politico’s David Siders Wednesday.
How it sounded inside a DNC committee meeting the moment Justice Kennedy’s retirement was announced pic.twitter.com/6S9uO2JGzQ— David Siders (@davidsiders) June 27, 2018
McConnell announced shortly after the retirement news that a confirmation hearing and a floor vote for President Trump's pick to replace Kennedy will be happening this fall.