Not white. Not male. Not a career judge.
Those were just some of the criteria senators outlined Sunday as they discussed their hopes for the next Supreme Court justice.
With Justice David Souter retiring this summer, Democrats in particular said the vacancy is an opportunity for President Obama to diversify the high court -- not just by choosing a woman or minority justice, but a candidate with a resume that includes something other than years on the bench.
That's right if you happen to be white and male you may as well not apply. On top of this anyone over 60 is likely disqualified as well. Each are disqualified for their own reasons. White males are disqualified for reasons of political correctness. Meanwhile, those over sixty are knocked out for reasons of strategy. Anyone too old isn't going to be on the bench long enough to give ideological weight.
Put it all together and the potential field for the next Supreme Court justice is rather limited. Now, maybe, I am missing something but isn't the Supreme Court far too important to allow it to be a tool for social engineering.?
The president, through political correctness and strategy, has now just eliminated about two thirds of the folks he could be choosing for the bench. It's one thing to pick a judge based on ideology. It's also makes perfect sense to think that a wide range of experience is a benefit. It is just plain looney to dismiss any white male because there aren't enough women on the Supreme Court.
Has political correctness really gotten this out of control that not only is race a consideration but affirmative action is outwardly demanded? Just imagine if someone dismissed all the groups now being considered. Of course, everyone would call them a racist. Now, we call them someone seeking diversity. Isn't qualification more important than diversity when determining the most important position in our Judiciary?
In fact, if you know anything about just how much identity politics are a part of the Democratic party's base, this comes as no surprise. The Hispanics (represented by the Congressional Hispanic Caucus), the African Americans (represented by the Congressional Black Caucas) and the feminists (represented by NOW and Planned Parenthood) all hold a great deal of weight in the party. Each not only expects but demands that they get a certain number of their folks into any Democratic administration. Here's how the Washington Post described it.
While both parties feel pressure to keep the bench diverse, Democrats have less latitude for bucking these expectations in judicial nominations than Republicans do. The core constituency that Republicans must satisfy in high court nominations is the party's social conservative base, which fundamentally cares about issues, not diversity, and has accepted white men who practice the judging it admires. By contrast, identity-oriented groups are part of the core Democratic coalition, so it's not enough for a Democrat to appoint a liberal. At least some of the time, it will have to be a liberal who also satisfies certain diversity categories.
The problem of course is that by the time the president is done appeasing all the identity politics of the Democratic base there will be very few qualified judges left.