Bench Memos

What Next?

In the new post-election issue of National Review (available on newsstands and to digital subscribers here), I take a look at the damage that President Obama might inflict on the Supreme Court in his second term. A couple of excerpts:

[I]f Obama is able, say, to replace both Ginsburg and either Scalia or Kennedy with liberals in their 50s, he will establish a liberal majority on the so-called Roberts Court and create a four-to-three edge for liberals among the younger justices. If he is somehow able to replace Ginsburg, Scalia, and Kennedy with young liberals, he will likely ensure two or three decades of liberal dominance of the Court.…

[T]he most likely scenario during Obama’s second term is that the only vacancy he will have to fill is Ginsburg’s seat. But conservatives shouldn’t take much solace from this forecast. If Obama succeeds in replacing Ginsburg, he will lock up her seat on the left for another generation. Plus, there is still a substantial chance that the less favorable scenarios could arise.

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