The Washington PostDemocracy Dies in Darkness

Opinion Who is Mr. McConnell to say the Supreme Court shouldn’t be politicized?

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) boards an elevator on Capitol Hill on Oct. 21.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) boards an elevator on Capitol Hill on Oct. 21. (Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post)
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Words fail me — almost — after reading Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell’s (R-Ky.) contemptuous, contemptible and screamingly dishonest “Democrats, leave the Supreme Court alone” [op-ed, Nov. 14]. Why did the bio not include at least a word about his own egregious campaign to stack, PAC and pack the courts?

Hubert Beckwith, Fairfax

Mitch McConnell argued in his Nov. 14 op-ed that the Biden administration is attempting to “permanently damage the rule of law.” He wrote that “judicial independence is as fragile as it is important.” Mr. McConnell is forgetting his own history.

If politics played no role, then Mr. McConnell would have allowed a vote on President Barack Obama’s nomination of Merrick Garland. Instead, Mr. McConnell hoped for and ensured that the Trump administration would be able to appoint a more conservative justice. 

Mr. McConnell succeeded in influencing the perspective of court decisions. To suggest that only the Democrats attempt to do so is hypocritical at best.  

Yvonne Perret, Cumberland, Md.

I have known for some time about the hypocrisy of Mitch McConnell, but his Nov. 14 op-ed was breathtaking for its duplicity. He blocked an extremely qualified Obama nominee for the reason of nearness to an upcoming presidential election and then rushed a Trump nominee through the Senate with less than a month to spare before another election. The senator preached that the court should be free of political partisanship, yet he did what he did for partisan purposes.

The Constitution does not define the number of judges who should sit on the court; in fact, that number has changed over the years. Rather than increase the number, I would prefer a term or age limit instead, perhaps mandating retirement after 20 or 25 years on the bench or age 70 or 75, whichever came first. There is no evidence that a justice nearing his or her retirement would render any opinion differently. There could be rules established to prevent former justices from contributing to any case before the court.

In any event, don’t expect Mr. McConnell to change.

George Smith, Frederick

Though I thought Mitch McConnell’s op-ed to be well argued, and though I largely agree with his criticism of Senate Majority Leader Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.), I marveled at Mr. McConnell’s inconsistency. How could the author of this piece not have allowed the candidacy of Merrick Garland to come to the floor of the Senate? 

Truly amazing gall.

Stephen Eccles, Annandale