A lot of my conservative or libertarian friends argue that voting for Trump will be the only bulwark against Hillary Clinton’s potential packing of Supreme Court justices of liberals because Trump has made up a list of conservative justices he will advocate for Anton Scalia’s seat if he wins in November.
Remember the Supreme Courts is a branch of government created to be a check on the excesses of both the executive and legislative branches of government in all of the United States. We mostly view it as having a conservative or liberal balance historically but Presidents and Congress has always respected the independence of the Court.
But let’s think of his character defects that will largely affect the Courts during a Trump Presidency.
Let’s remember his ideology – he has decided to focus his energies on changing the Republican Party into a “European Style Worker’s Party” largely based on the French National Front or British Nationalist Party which are largely authoritarian, nationalist, xenophobic, and trade protectionist to fit his strongman government.
If it is to be believed that he will undergo such a illiberal change to the GOP, causing it to switch from the party of Lincoln, Reagan, and Eisenhower to the party of Stalin, Hitler, and Mussolini – what use does a constitutional, Originalist court serve?
How can the Separation of Powers, Federalism, and Individual Rights – the traditional judicial ideology of libertarian or conservative justices, serve a megalomaniac like Trump’s vision of the American Presidency unrestricted in power by courts, legislatures, and party?
I don’t know if it is because Trump is a ignoramus about the American political system, but the question of the Supreme Court, too, has bothered me.
Whereas, on the other hand, HRC winning in November is likely and I do think she is less likely to be authoritarian than Trump and will continue to work government as it has conventionally done business. The courts under HRC may indeed keep its independence more so than being a court that will pander every Constitutional Crisis a illiberal Trump Administration will bring.
Thus, I can comfortably believe a Hillary Clinton victory in November, while ensuring that the courts may have one or more justices being “activist”, it is not the apocalyptic vision many conservatives think.
Lastly, how can any conservative or libertarian agree with Trump’s authoritarianism strongman politics or even consider that it would be a preferred outcome over HRC’s regulatory, conventional state of governance?
Conservatives prefer that the Federal Government remains weak – which allows for the states and local governments to be the governing laboratories of democracy. But consider a Trump presidency and his pension for power mongering – would it not be in his interest to rule from the oval office and insist on bullying the states to suit his ends?
If anything, mainstream conservatives or libertarians have a better reason to vote against Trump this year – whether voting for Gary Johnson in solid Red or Blue states or HRC in swing states because there’s a lot to lose in this election if Trump wins – the GOP will start its slow burn decline towards Trump’s illiberal politics and the Supreme Court will lose its independence.
This election is not a single issue problem – Obama hasn’t taken away your guns – but allowing such a mad man to become your President and perhaps the most powerful man in world will have its consequences.