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OpEdNews Op Eds    H3'ed 2/16/16

A New Level Of Obstruction, And A New Level Of Embarrassment

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If you're a Republican, you must be feeling quite embarrassed right now from all sh*t going on in your party. Seriously, there's really nothing to be proud of. Not only did the Republican leadership come out immediately after the passing of Justice Scalia with the position that they wouldn't allow President Obama to replace him, but then the Republican presidential contenders had a knock-down, drag-out, schoolyard brawl, which was nothing short of laughable. The pundits and comics are having a field day.

The levels of vitriol, hypocrisy and lying are astounding. I almost don't know where to begin, but in every scenario I can think of - Republicans are f**ked. They've brought the concept of "obstructionism" to a whole new level by immediately playing their hand on their intent to deny President Obama his opportunity to fill this newly vacant Supreme Court seat. They could have just bogged down the process and dragged it down to run out the clock. But nooooooo. They decided to come out, up front, and publicly state that they won't even consider Obama's nominee, no matter who it is. And all of the Republicans have diligently fallen in line behind Leader Mitch McConnell, that "the next president" should be the one to appoint Scalia's replacement.

Now... why, pray tell, would Republicans insist on Obama shirking his responsibility and leave this Supreme Court vacancy to "the next president"? Of course, there's only 1 possible explanation/rationale/reason for this - they think a Republican will win the presidential election and then be able to appoint a Conservative to the court to keep the balance of power in the Court on the Conservative side. But, let's think about what's more likely to happen...

With the Republican's level of hypocrisy and obstruction reaching an all time high, the American people will squarely fix the blame on them for all of the dysfunction in Washington. Anger and resentment will escalate and the Republican presidential candidates will go down in flames trying to "delay, delay, delay" this nomination, while the Republican Senate candidates up for election and re-election will falter under the weight of their ridiculous arguments. All of that will not only keep the White House in Democratic hands, but will turn the Senate majority over to the Democrats as well. And then, either Bernie or Hillary will appoint the next two or three Supreme Court justices.

Here's another scenario... just for fun... Donald Trump locks up the Republican nomination (which is very likely since he's leading by a lot in South Carolina), and the Republican party goes into panic mode in their Convention. Perhaps they'll coalesce behind him, but they may maneuver into a "Brokered Convention" which would somehow take the nomination away from Trump and hand it to one of the "Establishment" candidates. If that happens, Trump will undoubtedly run as an Independent which will split the Republican vote. That would not only hand the next presidency over to the Democratic nominee (easily), but with a "Yuuuuuge" mandate.

Either way, Republicans lose as the turnout in this next election will be massive. The stakes could not be higher, and I would venture to say they will never be higher in our lifetime, as the fate of both the Executive AND Judicial branches of government are held in the balance. Not only that, but with momentum going against an openly obstructionist party, even the balance of power in the Legislative branch could be at risk.

I have to say - this is the most exciting time to be a political junkie.

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Scott Shuster is a progressive columnist, publishing since May of 2005. His liberal ideology is a refreshing diversion from 'politics as usual' in Washington.
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