Excerpt from: CREDO Action
For a generation, the Supreme Court’s conservative majority has waged war against progressive values — giving corporations unprecedented power to buy elections, gutting the Voting Rights Act, taking away women’s access to abortion and reproductive health care, holding up crucial progress in the fight against climate change, and undermining the power of labor unions.
The passing of Justice Antonin Scalia has given President Obama an opportunity to change the balance of the Supreme Court, turning it in a more progressive direction. The president has been under pressure from the political establishment to put forward a so-called mainstream1 nominee with “bipartisan appeal”2 who will appeal to Republican obstructionists, but so far, he has indicated that he is not considering a “moderate” in order to ease the confirmation process.3
The president should choose a strong progressive who will fight for women’s rights, voting rights, and the environment while pushing back against corporate power and money’s grip on politics. And, with the future of the court at stake, we need to make sure the president knows that we will have his back if he picks someone with strong progressive values as his nominee. He may make his nomination in the very near future, so we need to speak out now.
Desperate to appeal to their extremist base and hold on to their majority on the court, obstructionist Republicans in the Senate, bolstered by the right-wing media and the Republican field of presidential candidates, have promised to block the president’s nominee, no matter whom he chooses.
This Republican obstruction of President Obama’s Supreme Court nominee is just the latest in a long line of attempts to thwart the president’s agenda and delegitimize his authority as president. These efforts are rooted in Republicans’ commitment to protect the interests of the corporations that fund their party and from a desire to pander to the racist elements within their base.
With the values of America’s highest court at stake, there’s no reason for the president to compromise with such extremists. Yet some are suggesting that in the face of Republican attempts to undermine the constitution for partisan gain, President Obama could improve his nominee’s chances by appointing a more conservative justice, under the theory that such a nominee might be more likely to appeal to Republicans. This would be a mistake.
While President Obama has made compromises in the face of Republican hostage taking in the past, he has also responded to pressure from progressives and taken the right action on issues such as immigration, marriage equality, worker’s and women’s rights. If we want him to chart a progressive course in this history-making decision, the time is now to generate public pressure. That’s why we’re joining with our friends at Democracy for America to make sure our voices are heard.
Tell President Obama to nominate a progressive to replace Justice Antonin Scalia on the Supreme Court. The petition to President Obama reads:
- “Nominate a progressive to replace Justice Antonin Scalia on the Supreme Court.”
Go the link below to sign the petition:
Thanks for taking a stand for progressive values today,
Heidi Hess, Senior Campaign Manager
CREDO Action from Working Assets
Nicholas Fandos, “Schumer Expects Obama to Nominate a Mainstream Justice,” The New York Times, February 14, 2016.
Bridget Bowman, “Schumer: Supreme Court Nominee Should Be ‘Mainstream’,” Roll Call, February 17, 2016.
Tribune News Services, “Obama: ‘I intend to do my job’ and nominate a qualified Supreme Court candidate,” Chicago Tribune, February 16, 2016.
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