Judge Amy Coney Barret Does Not Think SCOTUS 5-4 Split Decisions Are A Sign Of Political Partisanship

Federal Appeals Court Judge Amy Coney Barrett At Hillsdale College In May 2019

In an interview at Hillsdale College in May 2019, Federal Appeals Court Judge and now Trump’s U.S. Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett said she does not think the increasing 5-4 split decisions at the U.S. Supreme Court are a sign of political partisanship. This is a very strange assessment given the fact that much of the public angst against the U.S. Supreme Court can be attributed to the increasing number of these 5-4 split decisions between the 5 conservative and 4 liberal justices, which people have reasonably attributed to partisan political differences.

Judge Barrett’s strange position that Supreme Court 5-4 split decisions are not as a result of partisan political differences will certainly draw the attention of Democratic Senators at her confirmation hearings, which are already expected to be the most contentious Supreme Court confirmation hearings ever.

Bottom line folks, with Justice Amy Coney Barrett in the U.S. Supreme Court, Americans better get used to “non-partisan” 6-3 split decisions on ACA, voting rights, DACA, Trump’s tax returns, 2020 election challenges…….. Simply put, get used to “non-partisan” 6-3 split decisions on steroids!!

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Amy Coney Barrett Feared “A Very Marked Shift” In SCOTUS Composition If Hillary Clinton Won In 2016

University of Notre Dame Law Professor Amy Coney Barrett giving a presentation at Jacksonville University On November 3, 2016 , five days before the general elections

An interesting presentation then Professor Amy Coney Barrett gave at Jacksonville University in November 2016, five days before the elections, begs for further scrutiny now that President Trump has formally nominated her to fill the U.S. Supreme Court seat left vacant after the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. In her hour long presentation at Jacksonville University, which reasonable people will agree was highly impressive, Professor Barrett delved into a whole host of issues dealing with the U.S. Supreme Court and its Justices. Of particular relevance today, is the fear Professor Barrett expressed of “a very marked shift” in the Supreme Court to the left, were Hillary Clinton to win the presidency in 2016.(see clip below)

Professor Barrett’s concerns in November 2016 are of particular concern today because the “very marked shift” in the U.S. Supreme Court she feared in 2016 has come to pass. The only difference is that the marked shift in the court has been to the right, with Trump as President. More importantly, the very concerns she had about a future President Clinton replacing Justice Scalia with a liberal, is the exact situation we currently find ourselves in, with President Trump getting ready to replace liberal Justice Ginsburg with her–a staunch conservative. Given her fears in 2016, should Trump have nominated someone more liberal to replace Justice Ginsburg? In other words, is Judge Amy Barrett only worried about the U.S. Supreme Court markedly shifting to the left but okay if the shift is to the right?

Specifically, then Professor Barrett argued in her presentation that whoever won the presidency in 2016, who she assumed like many would be Clinton, would have a chance to replace up to four Supreme Court justices, given their advanced ages. Clinton, she argued, would not only fill the vacant Scalia seat with a reliable liberal, tipping the balance of the court leftward, but would also likely replace Justices Ginsburg, Breyer and Kennedy with much younger reliable liberals, essentially turning the U.S. Supreme Court into a reliably liberal court. Trump on the other hand, Professor Barrett argued, would fill the vacancies with a “mixed bag” of justices resulting in a somewhat center-right court but definitely not a far right Supreme Court.

Reasonable people will agree that with the appointments of Justices Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh, President Trump has already shifted the U.S. Supreme Court to the right. Trump’s nomination of conservative Judge Amy Barrett to replace reliably liberal Justice Ginsburg will therefore lead to the very “marked shift” in the U.S. Supreme Court that then Professor Amy Barrett feared with a Clinton presidency. The question Democratic Senators need to confront Judge Barrett with at her confirmation hearings, is whether she is now comfortable with the marked shift in the Supreme Court to the right. Should Trump have nominated a Supreme Court justice more in the mold of Justice Ginsburg to prevent the marked shift to the right?

It bears pointing out however that Professor Barrett espoused an interpretation of the role of judges generally, and supreme court justices in particular, that many legal scholars will find very refreshing. She stated very clearly that the role of a judge is not to placate to the partisan political camps but rather to follow the law, wherever it leads. She illustrated her point with Justice Scalia, who sided with the liberal justices time and time again on criminal law issues even though as a conservative, Republican voters expected him to be a “law and order” judge, always siding with law enforcement in criminal cases. Professor Barrett said Justice Scalia did so not because he liked criminals, but because that was what the text of the constitution required him to do. This should be a warning shot to Trump Republicans who are fast-tracking her confirmation in the hopes that she will rubber stamp GOP policy positions at the Supreme Court.

Bottom line folks, as things currently stand, Judge Amy Coney Barrett’s ascension to the U.S. Supreme Court is all but certain. There’s literally nothing Democrats can do procedurally or otherwise, to stop her confirmation to the high court. One only hopes that during her confirmation hearings, Democratic Senators will confront her with tough questions, among them, her fears in 2016 of a “marked shift” in the composition of the U.S. Supreme Court. Specifically, Democratic Senators should ask Judge Barrett why she feared a marked shift of the high court to the left but is now seemingly comfortable with a marked shift to the right, thanks to her confirmation.

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Sen Joni Ernst Busted Again Talking About Cuts To Medicare, Medicaid, SS

Sen Joni Ernst (R-Iowa)

An audio recording of Sen Joni Ernst(R-Iowa) telling a group of GOP donors that there needs to be “changes”(read cuts) to Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security has surfaced. You’ll remember that Sen Ernst made similar remarks at a town hall in September 2019 where she said Congress needs to meet behind closed doors to address these programs–essentially gut Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security in secret.

In the latest audio, a person at the GOP event can be heard saying, “Even without the additional spending we’re already going bankrupt…the biggest driver of that being entitlements. It is interesting hearing your classmate [Sen]David Perdue. He’s been pretty frank about the changes that need to happen with Medicare and Medicaid. Are you on the same page with him on that?

Sen Ernst responded, “I think we [Republican Senators]all are because we all understand our non discretionary spending is growing like this. Everybody focuses on the discretionary spending because that’s what we have control over in Congress. The rest is on auto pilot and it’s out of control. So we have to figure out ways to honor the commitments that have been made and make changes for the future.”

For the record Sen David Perdue(R-GA) has been very vocal about his desire to reign in Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security spending in an effort to address the ballooning federal deficit. Sen Joni Ernst has also flirted with this idea previously but unlike Sen Perdue, is afraid to say so in public. Why won’t Sen Joni Earnst, who is up for reelection in 2020, look Iowans in their eyes and tell them that she wants cuts to their Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security benefits?

Bottom line folks, Americans elect politicians and send them to Washington with the understanding that the said politicians will in turn look out for their interests. All national polls indicate that Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security remain very popular programs among Americans, including Iowans. Where, as here, Sen Joni Earnst appears hell bent on gutting such programs, she owes Iowans an explanation–publicly. Simply put, Sen Ernst should tell Iowans in public, what she says all the time at private GOP gatherings and that is, she wants cuts to Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security programs. Iowans deserve a Senator who will level with them.

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Mitch McConnell Rewards Lobbyist’s Wife With Federal Judgeship

A bombshell segment on MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow show says Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell expedited the confirmation of U.S. District Judge Wendy Vitter as payback for the work her lobbyist husband David Vitter did to land an aluminium plant linked to Russian Oligarch Oleg Deripaska in Kentucky. David Vitter, a former Republican U.S. Senator from Louisiana is now a lobbyist for Rusal, the Russian firm tied to Oligarch Oleg Deripaska and previously sanctioned by the U.S. government. It is Rusal that has committed $200 million to build an aluminium plant in Mitch McConnell’s Kentucky.

According to the Maddow segment, the confirmation of Wendy Vitter as a federal judge had stalled because a lot of Republicans did not feel she was qualified for the job. However according to Maddow, five weeks after her lobbyist husband David Vitter called McConnell confirming that Rusal will invest in Kentucky, McConnell used his position as Senate Majority Leader to expedite Wendy Vitters confirmation–a clear cut case of pay-for-play corruption and abuse of power.

Maddow specifically said, “Within five weeks of David Vitter calling Mitch McConnell to tell him that Rusal was going to put this plant in Kentucky, Rusal was going to dump hundreds of millions of dollars into Mitch McConnell’s home state, within five weeks of that call, the nomination of David Vitter’s wife to be a federal judge, a nomination that had been languishing for a year and a half because she was so humiliatingly and embarrassingly and obviously unqualified for the job, whose confirmation hearing went so badly it went viral and got her nomination buried, turns out within five weeks of Mitch McConnell getting that call from David Vitter saying hey I got an aluminium plant we are going to put in your home state thanks from Oleg, within five weeks of that call, Wendy Vitter’s nomination got pulled off the trash heap by McConnell and Mitch McConnell expedited it, put it on top of the list and now she’s a federal judge for life. Must be nice.”

Bottom line, there are already a lot of questions surrounding Mitch McConnell and Russia that warrant an investigation. This new pay-for-play twist involving a federal judge should definitely be explored further both by Democrats and the mainstream media. Simply put, McConnell should not be allowed to abuse his position as Senate Majority Leader to push bills in the Senate that seemingly benefit him personally. More importantly, McConnell should not be allowed to continue ruining the credibility of federal courts with pay-for-play confirmation of federal judges. McConnell has already done enough damage to the credibility of federal courts with the Kavanaugh incident.

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Trump And McConnell “Whitening” Federal Courts

OutfrontCNN recently did a segment about a sitting federal judge in mississippi rebuking Trump’s attacks on the federal judges, especially judges of color, and likening such attacks to racial attacks by the Ku Klux KLan. The judge raised several issues of concern but the one that caught Yours Truly’s attention was his assertion that a staggering 90% of Trump’s judicial picks are White. This is a shocking statistic that we rarely hear from the mainstream media and should certainly be explored further especially as Trump’s enforcer in the U.S. Senate, Mitch McConnell, continues to bend the rules to push through Trump’s judicial picks. The full OutFrontCNN segment is available here but the relevant clip is below

There are already a lot of complaints about how Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is bending U.S. Senate rules to pack federal courts with right wing judges. This troubling revelation that Sen McConnell and Trump are essentially “Whitening” the federal courts instead of making them more reflective the country’s current racial makeup should concern everybody. As Criminal Defense Attorney Joey Jackson, the guest in the OutFrontCNN segment correctly pointed out, “We need a federal judiciary that looks like the populace.”

Bottom line, Mitch McConnell bending Senate rules to pack the federal courts with right wing judges is in itself, very detrimental to the judiciary’s image because people lose respect for a court that is viewed to be rigged/biased. With this new revelation that there’s a racial element to Trump/MitchMcConnell’s court-packing, everyone should be calling for an immediate pause to the judicial selection process until such a time as a respectable bipartisan mechanism for filling judicial vacancies can be put in place. Simply put, McConnell and Trump packing the courts with 90% White right wing damages is doing irreparable damage to the federal judiciary and must be stopped for the court’s sake. This is not a partisan issue

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Trump’s Sister And Federal Judge Abruptly Retires Amid Tax Fraud Probe

In case you missed it MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow recently did a segment about Maryanne Trump Barry’s abrupt retirement from the federal bench

Maryanne Trump Barry, Trump’s older sister was a judge at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. According to Maddow, both President Trump and his federal judge sister are currently targets of a criminal tax fraud investigation related to their deceased father’s estate. Maryanne Trump apparently ended up pocketing a staggering $200 million from the tax fraud scheme.

Naturally the tax fraud probe also led to judicial misconduct complaints against judge Maryanne Trump Barry. Her abrupt retirement effectively ends the judicial misconduct proceedings against her exposing once again the gaping loophole in the judicial misconduct process that allows federal judges to walk away with zero accountability.

Bottom line, as Maddow correctly pointed out, Judge Maryanne Trump Barry’s abrupt retirement brings into focus once again the issue of President Trump’s tax returns. It’s becoming apparent with every single passing day that the reason Trump is terrified to release his tax returns is because it is riddled with criminal conduct that will almost certainly lead to his impeachment.

Sadly, the so-called “moral values” “evangelical christians” occupying today’s Republican Party are the ones helping him hide his tax returns and the criminal conduct embedded in them.

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Kushner Hasn’t Paid Federal Income Taxes In 7 Years

Jared Kushner & Ivanka Trump

A bombshell New York Times piece reveals that thanks to a tax loophole, Trump’s son in law Jared Kushner who is worth an estimated $324 million, has not paid any federal income taxes from 2009 to 2016–seven years. While this is shocking to most Americans who feel saddled with federal income taxes on their incomes that are significantly lower than Kushner’s, the sad reality is that Kushner may not have broken any tax laws. He is just doing what most wealthy Americans do–taking advantage of loopholes in the nation’s tax laws to avoid paying their fair share of taxes.

The biggest takeaway from this bombshell New York Times piece is therefore not the fact that rich Kushner has not paid federal income taxes in 7 years but that these shocking tax loopholes that favor the uber wealthy even exist in the first place. In other words going forward, it is very important that the New York Times and other mainstream media titans expose how wealthy people, usually Republicans, manipulate tax loopholes to avoid paying their fair share while at the same time saddling the poor and middle class with significant tax burdens.


According to the New York Times piece, the specific tax loophole Kushner manipulated allows real estate investors to use the depreciation on their assets (real estate) to write off their taxable incomes. Yours Truly is not a tax expert and therefore not at liberty to go into the weeds of real estate tax law, but it certainly appears from the New York Times piece that rich real estate investors look at their taxable income and then make up depreciation amounts on their property that either significantly reduces or totally wipes out their taxable income–in essence cheating the system.The mainstream media has a duty to expose more about this tax loophole for the benefit of the regular tax payers who dutifully pay their federal income taxes. One of the biggest failings of the mainstream media is that they break stories like these that have great national significance only to get distracted by the next Trump Tweet or rally. There is usually very little or no follow up on great stories like these that are very important to grassroots voters.


Bottom line we can all agree that everyone needs to pay their fair share of federal income taxes. When someone like Jared Kushner who is worth an estimated $324 million does not pay any federal income taxes in 7 years, all reasonable people will agree that the system is broken and needs to be fixed.

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Democrats Poised To Pick Up Congressional Seats In North Carolina

A special panel of three federal district court judges has struck down North Carolina’s congressional map as unconstitutionally gerrymandered with less than three months to the 2018 midterms elections. This means  a new North Carolina congressional map will have to be hastily drawn before the midterms.




Republicans currently hold 10 of the 13 U.S. House seats from North Carolina thanks in large part to the gerrymandered congressional districts which favored the GOP. If a “fair” congressional map is adopted before the 2018 midterms, political pundits expect a net gain in seats for Dems and a loss for Republicans. Simply put, with a fair North Carolina congressional district map, the GOP will not win 10 of the 13 seats.

There is also a chance that this gerrymandering fight might end up in the Roberts Supreme Court which currently has only 8 justices after Kennedy’s retirement. Without a ninth justice to tip the scales, it is highly likely that the Roberts Supreme Court will either punt on this case or be deadlocked(4-4 decision) in which case the decision by the district court would stand–new congressional map for North Carolina.

Bottom line Dems must take advantage of this great opportunity to pick up as many congressional seats in North Carolina as possible. Put another way, Dems must flip NC blue!!

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