I must admit that I so detest Republicans that I no longer can watch or listen to them…other than selectively choosing to watch their worst RBSI (Republican bile spewing incidents). Still in 2018, I was glued to my screen during the KHD (Kavanaugh Hearings Debacle) along with more than 20.4 million people, which according to NBC News doesn’t account for millions more who were streaming through their iPhones, and watching on their computers, or in public places like colleges, work places, and bars. According to the Pew Research Center, 41% of Americans were in favor of Kavanaugh’s nomination, 36% were opposed, and 23% offered no opinion.
After the KHD (during which I continuously choked on the RBSI) was over, I was through watching SCOTUS nomination hearings, and I only read about the power grab for Amy Coney Barrett’s confirmation on October 23, 2020, a week before the presidential election and 30 days after Trump nominated her. Personally I was sickened that McConnell and Trump chose such a mediocre Christian evangelical woman and pushed her nomination through so soon after the brilliant RBG died, and so close to the presidential election. I barely followed the process, and assumed others felt the same way. And, I wasn’t wrong about that. While oddly enough, I couldn’t find the total viewership, Fox News won the ratings game with 3.5 million people watching. According to Gallup, 51% of the population approved of her nomination with 46% disapproval rates, and 3% had no opinion.
Just a few other interesting numbers…In 1991, according to Forbes, 20.5 million people watched Anita Hill’s testimony at the Clarence Thomas hearings. I just read an interesting NPR story about Sukari Hardnett, a woman who worked for Clarence Thomas and would have corroborated Hill’s testimony, but wasn’t called.
In 2017, 33 million watched the Neil Gorsuch SCOTUS hearings. According to the Pew Research Center, 44 percent of Americans approved the Gorsuch nomination, 32 percent opposed it, and 24% offered no opinion.
Four days ago, according to the Pew Research Center, “44% of the public says the Senate should definitely (24%) or probably (20%) confirm Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, while just 18% say she should not be confirmed. Nearly four-in-ten (38%) say they are unsure.”
Still, this morning, since I knew I couldn’t watch the RBSI at the hearings without getting sick (and my doctor is working with me to lower my blood pressure) I sat thinking about what I would like to learn about Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, and what messaging we Democrats need to produce. Since I have read a number of articles about the judge (I’m including this one from Bookings about why she will make a difference), I know she will be an outstanding SCOTUS Justice, and there is no doubt in my mind about that. So, the idea that came to mind is this:
Democrats-only statements and questions tape. As the hearings progress I only want to hear opening statements and questions from Democrats. That way, I truly can learn more about Judge Jackson without having my blood pressure boil over and without having to listen to Republican racist rants, or as the New York Intelligencer magazine suggests, issues about “affirmative action” and “wokeness” as well as snide suggestions that a truly qualified justice wouldn’t need an identity-based advantage.” And, I also won’t have to watch Mitch McConnell play out his strategy, which he discussed on the Senate floor, of using the hearings to “bash liberal activists championing her cause. I intend to explore why groups that are waging political war against the court as an institution decided Judge Jackson was their special favorite.”
The second tape that I hope a Democratic media group would edit and broadcast would be a Republicans-only statements and questions tape. I wouldn’t be able to watch this or listen to it. But I am hoping that if enough voters hear Republican’s racism, smears against Judge Jackson’s background, lies about “progressive democrats who are waging war against the court” (as opposed to Republicans who are working to destroy justice in every single state and who participated in the Insurrection), lies about Judge Jackson’s rulings, and watch Republican thuggery, condescension, and sexism play out, every single American who is appalled by their behavior and believes in liberty and justice for all will realize how important it is for us to vote in record numbers and win handily in the November elections.
This is a Creative Commons article. The original version of this article appeared here.