Governor Brian Sandoval (NV) is a Republican and President Barack H. Obama (Kenya) is, according to several outlets, in the process of vetting him to replace Justice Antonin Scalia on the Supreme Court bench.
Some will tell you this is another in the president’s brilliant eight millionth dimension chess player moves. Others will tell you he’s just trolling the GOP — which is fairly undeniable I think at this point. To absolutely no one’s surprise, Senate Republicans have already flatly rejected Sandoval, who is one of their own, because he’s being considered by the evil communist-Kenyan-socialist for the position, and for no other reason.
If you ask me, and of course none of you did, Gov. Brian Sandoval is the pluperfect personification of the Obama Era.
Sandoval is either a troll pick or a trial balloon. Obama has to know that if he nominates anyone too liberal for the Republicans — and I’m pretty sure Richard Nixon would fit that description these days — Republicans would reject them outright. So it seems that he decided to test the waters and offer a bit of a conciliatory olive branch in Sandoval. I’m not sure if he intends to really nominate the Nevada governor or not, but since the GOP already rejected him the point is moot.
Still, I can’t be the only one that sees this in a different light, I don’t think, and I compare this to so many other times in Obama’s tenure when he’s tried to play nice, only to have Republicans dig their boot heels even further into the soft, smelly manure that they’ve built their “governance” on.
He was supposed to be a one term president, they thought, and Mitch McConnell and his fellow Republicans have unmercifully blocked every avenue Obama has taken from the outset. Both of hits terms have been marked by Obama trying to get Republicans to play along — remember the Single Payer option in Obamacare anyone? — only to be rebuffed. Perhaps Obama has always thought that at some point Republicans would cross a line and become too adolescent for moderate Americans, which would result in them being swept out of office. But that has not happened.
From everything I’ve read, Sandoval isn’t a Republican that Democrats would necessarily recoil from instinctively, so he’s a good pick that way. Hell, he’s probably a good pick in any other era than the Obama Era. But the simple truth is that Obama has almost never gotten what he wanted from Republicans, though I don’t think that matters much in his political calculations.
It’s just funny to me, that once again we have ourselves an example of everything that is broken about our government. Republicans would lube up and fuck the Constitution if we let them, and yet they’re just ignoring it altogether and pretending as if there’s a “let the next guy pick it” clause in there somewhere. Democrats have the constitutional advantage, but instead of pushing Obama to nominate a bold progressive voice, he’s going a safer route.
This is probably why I’d make a shitty president and politician. I don’t have the instinct to play chicken with people like Senate Republicans. They’re too dogmatic to realize, even as the other car is rending theirs in two, that they should have pulled away or slammed on the breaks, and they’ll laugh gleefully the whole time because the liberal car was destroyed too. They’ve employed a scorched-earth philosophy his entire presidency, and here he is again, playing games with them.
In the end, it probably doesn’t matter who he nominates. And that is almost certainly why Sandoval’s was the first name released. Obama will be blocked by the Republicans in the Senate until enough Americans make it clear to those Senators that there is an electoral price to pay. Seeing how things have gone over the last few years, I have no idea if Scalia’s seat will be empty come November or not, but it’s fairly clear that Sandoval won’t be the nominee, and both Obama and McConnell know it.
Same as it ever was.