RedState, the influential conservative blog that has often helped shape the outcome of Republican primary elections and congressional Republican strategy, says its now time for Republicans to end their blockade of Chief Judge Merrick Garland’s nomination to the Supreme Court. “Now that Donald Trump is the presumptive nominee, this is not even a close call,” the site tells its readers, adding that “there is absolutely no reason to drag this out any longer.”
The conservative site’s new position, penned by RedState managing editor Leon Wolf, is hardly a robust endorsement of President Obama’s nominee. “Garland is not a great choice,” Wolf writes, “but he is not a terrible one, either.” Wolf sees Garland’s primary virtue as the fact that he is unlikely to remain on the Supreme Court for very long — “he is old (for a modern Supreme Court appointment) and will be up for replacement in probably 10 years instead of 20 or 30.”
That fact, Wolf writes, argues in favor of confirming Garland before he is replaced with someone else:
“Republicans must know that there is absolutely no chance that we will win the White House in 2016 now. They must also know that we are likely to lose the Senate as well. So the choices, essentially, are to confirm Garland and have another bite at the apple in a decade, or watch as President Clinton nominates someone who is radically more leftist and 10-15 years younger, and we are in no position to stop it.”
This unqualified call for Republicans to change strategy could be an important development in the battle over the Supreme Court.