The primary arguments against President Trump's latest Supreme Court nominee have thus far ranged from purely ideological, to frivolous and silly, to profoundly misleading but easily rebutted. Much of the opposition has been characterized by heavy-breathing hysteria, with a number of Democratic politicians eyeing White House bids laboring to distinguish themselves on the metric of shrill resistance. "We're looking at the destruction of the constitution," intoned California Senator Kamala Harris, dialing it up to eleven even before a nominee had been named. On the night of Kavanaugh's announcement, a number of Democrats who are seen as potential challengers to Trump in two years joined a raucous -- and even somewhat threatening -- protest outside of the Supreme Court, bellowing scary slogans, flanked by activists waving pre-made placards. And now the latest spectacle is New Jersey Senator Cory Booker hysterically indicting all Kavanaugh backers as parties to "evil," as Liz Warren gravely nods along:
Democrat Sen. Cory Booker (NJ) says people who support Judge Kavanaugh “complicit” in “evil.” pic.twitter.com/N7r640ji9o— Ryan Saavedra ???? (@RealSaavedra) July 24, 2018
"There's so much at stake here, this has nothing to do with politics...in the moral moment, there is no neutral. In a moral moment, there is no bystanders. You are either complicit in the evil -- you are either contributing to the wrong -- or you're fighting against it."
Narrator: It quite obviously has everything to do with politics, and weakly attempting to claim that it doesn't is a tell. Booker is trying very, very hard here -- too hard, in fact, per usual. He even goes on to invoke the "shadow of the valley of death," which seems bizarre and over the top, even for him. But this sort of rhetoric demonstrates how the hard left will always cast mainstream right-of-center voters and public figures as not simply misguided or having the wrong ideas for the country, but favoring or abetting outright evil. This is a longstanding component of the End of Discussion arsenal, and it's toxic. For all the yelling about Donald Trump obliterating norms and representing an unique threat to the republic through his words and actions, Booker drops the "evil" card over a prosaic disagreement about preferred judicial philosophies for members of the federal judiciary. The truth is that we'd be having this exact same debate over perhaps the exact same nominee if a more generic or traditional Republican were president. And the Left would be performing the exact same strident song and dance, as they literally always do. In this instance, it may all just be for show, especially if Kavanaugh does well in his hearings, and Republicans hang together. If the nominee doesn't stumble badly, there will be a number of Senate Democrats strongly incentivized to approve his confirmation, too.
While we're on the general subject of presidential aspirants trying too hard to flex for their base, let's discuss the stylings of New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, who's ham-handedly transforming herself from a update 'blue dog' moderate into a fire-breathing leftist. There's no flip she won't flop in her quest for national relevance, including tossing Bill Clinton under the bus when she thought she needed to. As a Congressional candidate and Congresswoman, she was a strong supporter of gun rights and a staunch critic of illegal immigration and "amnesty." She now claims she's embarrassed of her former self (she wasn't a college student at the time; she was an adult member of Congress), joining the wild-eyed NRA pile-on, and signing up for the 'abolish ICE' brigade:
Well, there you have it:— Matt Gorman (@mattsgorman) July 23, 2018
Sen. Gillibrand: If Dems Gain Control, “The First Thing We Should Do Is…Get Rid Of ICE” pic.twitter.com/odqIjTDRQr
She's also talking up her populism and apparently writing a children's picture book about suffragists. Translation: She's running. Of the Democrats' 2020 'Try Hard Triumvirate' -- Gillibrand, Booker and Harris -- the gentlelady from New York is currently in the lead for the phoniness trophy, amid very stiff competition. The others are going to have to step up their blowhard game, and Booker certainly gave it a go in the clip above. It's only going to get dumber, folks. Oh, and the media -- of course -- is going with a "Republicans pounce" angle to this story:
“Republicans seize!”https://t.co/TtLSRJGs1K— Guy Benson (@guypbenson) July 25, 2018
Here's a GOP roundup of some of the most demagogic language from Democratic Senators about this nominee.
UPDATE: Mitch McConnell took to the Senate floor to excoriate Booker's "evil" garbage today, scoffing, "who do they expect to believe this stuff?"