Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg might not live long enough to see President Donald J. Trump reelected in November. Fortunately, the United States has a Senate majority leader who stands ready to fulfill his constitutional duty to nominate a replacement in the event of her demise.
Ginsburg, 87, was hospitalized earlier this week with a gallbladder condition, the most recent of several health issues the justice has dealt with since Trump took office in 2016. Her apparent proximity to death has increased speculation that the High Court will have another vacancy before this year's general election.
Should that come to pass, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R., Ky.) has already begun preparations to nominate RBG's successor, according to a Politico report published Friday. "We're going to fill it," said Sen. John Barrasso (R., Wyo.), a member of the GOP leadership team, regarding a possible Supreme Court vacancy.
The article notes that Democrats would likely seize on Republican efforts to confirm RBG's replacement in 2020, given the GOP's previous role in "denying President Barack Obama a Supreme Court seat in an election year" following the 2016 death of Justice Antonin Scalia, a true legend. (Merrick Garland, RIP.)
McConnell, however, could not care less. He is more concerned with the solemn fulfillment of his professional and constitutional obligations, which include providing "advice and consent" on presidential nominations. When asked in 2019 what Republicans would do in the event of an election-year vacancy on the Supreme Court, the majority leader responded with characteristic resolve: "Oh, we'd fill it."
Democrats are understandably on edge. Ginsburg could have retired during the Obama administration, but thanks to her personal trainer—2018 Free Beacon Man of the Year Bryant Johnson—she decided to power through. After all, Hillary Clinton couldn't possibly lose, could she?
In an effort to stay alive until a Democrat is elected president, RBG has brazenly defied "stay at home" guidelines amid the coronavirus pandemic, sneaking into the Supreme Court's private gym to continue her workout sessions.
Ginsburg is more than just a reliable liberal vote on the highest court in the land. As her "Notorious RBG" nickname suggests, the justice has become something of a cultural icon among white liberals with Subarus and graduate degrees.
RBG's ability to maintain this "woke" celebrity status—despite her extreme aversion to hiring non-white law clerks and her problematic assessment of failed NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick's national anthem protests as "dumb and disrespectful"—is nothing short of extraordinary.
McConnell, by contrast, is unlikely to be the subject of a children's book or Hollywood film. He's not the most charismatic politician, but thanks to his deeply considered intellectual affinity for the Constitution, he has managed to become one of the most admirable figures in our country's history.
Under McConnell's steadfast leadership, Congress now has its highest approval rating since 2009, according to a recent Gallup poll. Democrats and their journalistic allies, meanwhile, are so intimidated by McConnell's cerebral exertion of power that they can't stop giving him badass nicknames.
McConnell has already confirmed two of President Trump's nominees to the Supreme Court, and if there's anyone who can pull off a hat trick before voters head to the polls in November, it's Midnight Mitch. His duty compels him.