by Tori Cappo
While American politics are always messy, the recent death of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia sparked another wave of controversy. In order for a new Supreme Court justice to be appointed, the Senate must approve the president’s nominee.
There was debate in the Senate over whether to consider President Obama’s nominee at all, according to huffingtonpost.com. Republican senators announced this week that they will not consider an Obama nominee for Supreme Court justice; rather, they have decided to wait until the next president is elected before looking at any nominees, according to nytimes.com.
Democrats, who have argued that Obama must, as president, nominate the next justice, would most likely want to see female nominees such as Patricia Ann Millett and/or people of color such as Adalberto Jordan, according to thedailybeast.com.
Women and minorities are often underrepresented in politics, but what will filling the gap mean as far as their plans of action for improvement in court? The drive to find out has been lost to keeping up appearances.
With Republicans in Senate unwilling to compromise on its conservative values, and Democrats who want to see candidates selected based on gender and race, we live with a system whose integrity must be called into question. Nowhere are we hearing a desire for nominees who are simply good judges.
This is, of course, is merely a pipe dream in an era in which so much of our government action is polarized. But wouldn’t it be nice if the American public could rely on a judicial system that would not compromise their needs based on individual political values? At what point did upholding one’s own beliefs become more important than hearing all sides of a case and making informed decisions to set positive precedents for the nation?
Without a mature, objective approach to the appointment process, the motives of both the executive and legislative branches must be held accountable. It is imperative that qualifications are examined and valued in U.S. Supreme Court justices, rather than skin tone or the way they choose to live their lives outside of court. The American public will only benefit from a justice who has the ability to best serve the people.