Ian Millhiser really lets loose on the profoundly embarrassing mash note Lisa Blatt wrote about Brett Kavanaugh (and, implicitly, the whole disgusting genre):
Sometimes a superstar is just a superstar. And sometimes a superstar is a powerful Republican with the power to decide whether my clients will win or lose billions of dollars. That is the case with Judge Brett Kavanaugh. The Senate should confirm him.
I am a partner a law firm where “profits per partner measured out at almost $1.2 million in 2017.” Because I am a liberal Democrat and feminist, I expect my friends on the left will criticize me for speaking up for Kavanaugh. But my clients will all benefit from having smart, qualified and engaged judges on our highest court who feel like I did them a solid by trading on my liberal credentials in order to boost their chances of getting confirmed.
Those clients, by the way, include Philip Morris and PhRMA. I’m also “the legal mind behind the Redskins ‘Take Yo Panties Off’ trademark defense.”
What happened to Merrick Garland was a disgrace. His nomination was the Democratic equivalent of Kavanaugh’s. Well, I guess they’re kind of the same. Okay, really they are only equivalent if you completely ignore how they’ve behaved on the bench.
Like when SeaWorld trainer Dawn Brancheau was killed by a whale that mauled her and then pulled her underwater until she drowned — the third time this particular whale killed someone while in captivity — Chief Judge Garland joined an opinion rejecting SeaWorld’s argument that “working with killer whales was not a recognized hazard because its training and safety program adequately controlled the risk.” Again, their argument was that working with killer whales was not a recognized risk. And this particular killer whale was a repeat offender.
Judge Kavanaugh, meanwhile, wrote a dissenting opinion claiming that the Department of Labor cannot protect whale trainers from dangerous workplaces, because that would be like regulating “tackling in the NFL or speeding in NASCAR.”
Did I mention that one of my clients is an NFL team?
Also, in Garza v. Hargan, Garland voted in favor of a woman that the Trump administration literally held prisoner to prevent her from obtaining an abortion. Kavanaugh dissented in that case too. Oh, and Kavanaugh frequently attacks the EPA’s efforts to protect the environment, while Garland takes a much lighter hand with federal agencies.
So the two guys are basically the same.
Democrats should quit attacking Kavanaugh—full stop. It is unbecoming to block him simply because they want to, and they risk alienating intelligent people. Like my clients.
And, again, the “Kavanaugh will be confirmed anyway so who can really object to someone lying about him in a public forum to advance their narrow self-interest?” defense is massively unconvincing. First of all, the chances of him being confirmed are not literally 100%. I of course think he’s overwhelmingly likely to be confirmed but they have a one-vote margin, and Kavanaugh had a six-figure debt disappear overnight for still unexplained reasons; you never know. But even assuming arguendo that we can be absolutely certain that he will be confirmed, the politics of the confirmation still matter. Blatt’s feigned innocence about Kavanaugh’s views on Roe is 100% in lockstep with the Republican strategy of assuring marginal voters that Kavanaugh is a harmless moderate and nobody has any idea what his views about the constitutionality of abortion bans are (and, hence, Susan Collins can hardly be blamed when Kavanaugh inevitably casts the fifth vote to overrule Roe, whether explicitly or sub silentio.) I don’t think it’s too much to ask liberal elites not to tell lies that benefit the Republican Party in public fora.
Paul’s comments on the matter are worthy of elevation:
How can somebody write something like this? How can somebody make an explicit argument that you ought to confirm somebody to the SCOTUS because he was nice to me personally? THAT’S LITERALLY HER MAIN POINT.
And the person who is making the argument has an utterly transparent self-interested reason for making it, and LEADS OFF THE PIECE BY POINTING THIS OUT?
Think about all the legal academic bullshit about how law school turns your mind into some sort of magical steel trap of relentless logic.
Then think about how this writer is in the 99.99th percentile of the legal profession.
Then consider what a fucking travesty of an argument this is — it’s literally something that would lead a bright 12-year-old to say “this is bullshit.”
Then have a drink.
That’s my plan anyway.
I honestly can’t decide whether to be outraged that Politico would publish this crap, or whether they should be applauded for providing a useful public service by showing how your overcompensated elite logrolling sausage gets made.