I don’t like Senator Lindsey Graham. Never have, never will. The reasons are too obvious for any conservative to even bother with. That said, there’s usually a method to his madness, and while it’s often self-serving, in this case what he’s doing makes a certain amount of sense.
Sen. Lindsey Graham on Sunday broke with several of his Republican colleagues by seemingly expressing support for President Joe Biden’s pledge to nominate the first-ever Black woman to the Supreme Court.
In an interview on CBS’ “Face the Nation,” Graham (R-S.C.) — a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee — also appeared to endorse J. Michelle Childs, a U.S. District Court judge in his home state of South Carolina, for the seat held by the retiring Justice Stephen Breyer.
Senate Republicans and conservative commentators have repeatedly criticized Biden for committing to selecting a Black woman to fill Breyer’s seat, with Sen. Roger Wicker (R-Miss.) suggesting in a local radio interview on Friday that whomever the president picks will be a “beneficiary” of affirmative action.
But Graham distanced himself from Wicker’s remarks on Sunday, saying, “Affirmative action is picking somebody not as well qualified for past wrongs. Michelle Childs is incredibly qualified. There is no affirmative action component if you pick her.”
Note that Graham is emphasizing Childs. Not any of the other candidates.
Childs would never have been a candidate except that she’s backed by Rep. Jim Clyburn. Clyburn is the guy who gave Biden the Dem nomination. Lefties have two handpicked candidates. Both of whom would be a good deal worse than Childs and a lot more dangerous.
On the scale of how damaging the three likely choices are, Leondra Kruger would be the most radical and the absolute worst, Ketanji Brown Jackson is next in line, and J. Michelle Childs would be the least bad. You can only predict so much about a justice before they’re seated, but going by their track records, Kruger would have an ambitious agenda to remake the country using the leverage of the court.
Kruger is also in her forties. She’s likely to spend a long time on the bench if she gets in.
Clyburn seems to have gone around soliciting support from some Senate Republicans, including Graham.
Since Senate Republicans can’t successfully block a Supreme Court nomination under current conditions, their support isn’t really needed. But this way, Clyburn, who’s proving to be pretty good at this, can claim that Childs has bipartisan support.
From the Republican standpoint, if Clyburn wins, then the next Dem Justice will be less toxic than the alternatives. She’ll obviously still be bad, but there are different gradations of bad.
And even if Clyburn doesn’t, there will be a split among Democrats and bitter feelings whatever the outcome.
Either the Left or Clyburn is going to lose and that will undermine party unity going into difficult primaries and then an even more challenging presidential election.