Amy Coney Barrett is not an isolated case: In the almost four years of his tenure, Trump has permanently reshaped US law.
Protests in the Supreme Court against Amy Coney Barrett’s nomination Foto: reuters/James Lawler Duggan
Yes, Amy Coney Barrett’s nomination to the Supreme Court is disturbing. Donald Trump’s proposal aims to radicalize the US Supreme Court conservatively. With her Christian fundamentalist views, Barrett makes it all the more painful to feel the void the death of the feminist icon Ruth Bader-Ginsburg has left. But Barrett’s nomination is only one small, if prominent, piece in a large puzzle.
When Barrett says that the wording of the US Constitution (from 1787 and in spirit) outweighs the decisions the Supreme Court has passed since then, that could mean the overturning of landmark judgments. The desegregation of 1954 is not, according to all reason, one of them. But the constitutionality of abortion, enshrined in the legendary Roe vs. Wade from 1973, should be up for discussion with a constitutional judge Barrett.
Same-sex marriage, judgments against discrimination based on gender or skin color will not be sacrosanct for Barrett, at least not if you measure them against their previous statements. Not to mention Obama Care, the first general health insurance for all Americans.
Amy Coney Barrett is the third Trump nomination for the Supreme Court and her name is now known worldwide. But who are Roderick Young or Cory Wilson known? Young is the 161st federal district court judge to be appointed by Trump. Wilson is number 53 on the list of judges in one of the 13 federal appeals courts. There are also two judges at the Federal Court for International Trade. More than 30 further legal confirmations from Trump are still pending in the US Senate. And the Republican-dominated Senate still has time to approve more judges, including Amy Coney Barrett.
Beyond his Twitter rage, beyond his lies and beyond the subtle threat of not leaving the White House voluntarily, Trump has calmly, radically and sustainably reshaped the judiciary in the USA in the almost four years of his tenure. On February 1, 2017, as one of his first acts, Trump nominated Neil Gorsuch to succeed the deceased Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia; later followed by Brett Kavanaugh.
Of the roughly 800 federal judgeships across the country, 218 have now been appointed by Trump. For the most part, like Amy Barrett, they are often young, dynamic, reactionary federal judges. You speak right for life – well beyond Trump’s term in office. This is the real tragedy of the conservative revolution in US legal policy.