Jack Ohman goes on a tour of U.S. Supreme Court law school campuses. Take the LSAT here.
Erika D. Smith: By selecting Brett Kavanaugh to replace Justice Anthony Kennedy for the Supreme Court, President Trump is repaying the liberal-hating social conservatives who voted for him. But blue states like California aren’t as morally bankrupt as many Americans think. Read more.
Andrew Malcolm, McClatchy D.C.: Every U.S. president for the past quarter-century has thought he could improve relations with Russia. Two factors have been consistent in those efforts: Their utter failures and, more recently, the powerful presence of ex-KGB officer Vladimir Putin, now president again. Read more.
Dan Walters, CALMatters: Democrats are likely to regain their two-thirds “supermajority” in the state Assembly this year. Whether they also enjoy that dominance in the state Senate depends on the outcome of one contest in rural California. Read more.
Timmen Cermak: Young Californians have had almost unlimited access to marijuana but virtually no access to affordable drug treatment. The California Society of Addiction Medicine is sponsoring Senate Bill 275 to ensure that hundreds of millions of dollars in state money delivers quality services. Read more.
Karen Ganon: Were they snatched as casually as say … a hat (unmarked with a name) maybe for a game of keep away by the schoolyard bullies? A poem on the border. Read more.
Erwin Chemerinsky: The Supreme Court’s Janus ruling was pure judicial activism. Unions, look out. Read more.
Takes on Brett Kavanaugh
Elliott Ash and Daniel L. Chen, The Washington Post: Brett Kavanaugh is much like the man who selected him – highly divisive in his decisions and rhetoric. According to a deep, data-driven survey of his writings from the bench, he is an uncommonly partisan judge, even compared to other federal appeals court judges. Read more.
David Brooks, New York Times: Brett Kavanaugh is the product of a conservative legal infrastructure that develops ideas, recruits talent, links rising stars, nurtures genius, molds and launches judicial nominees. It almost doesn’t matter which Republican is president. It almost doesn’t even matter if this person is confirmed or shot down; there are dozens more who can fill the vacancy, just as smart and just as conservative. Read more.
Ross Douthat, New York Times: It’s one thing to blow up the G-7 with trade wars and make nice with a murderous North Korean despot; it’s quite another to disappoint the D.C. conservative legal establishment. So instead of the dark horses or the female rising star, President Trump circled back to the best-known, deepest-resumed, most-vouched-for choice, and gave us Judge Brett Kavanaugh as the nominee. Read more.
Kathleen Parker, Washington Post: Even before President Trump announced his nomination of federal appeals court Judge Brett Kavanaugh to fill departing Justice Anthony Kennedy’s slot on the Supreme Court, the foul scent of anti-Catholicism began seeping into public commentary. Read more.
Dana Milbank, Washington Post: The “Sherpa” charged with leading President Trump’s nominee to confirmation is former Republican senator Jon Kyl, a big-time lobbyist for the pharmaceuticals industry. Now it makes sense. In tapping Brett Kavanaugh to be his second nominee to the Supreme Court, Trump has guaranteed that health care will be at the center of the confirmation fight. Read more.
Ramesh Ponnuru, Bloomberg: Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation hearings to be a Supreme Court justice will take place in the shadow of the nomination of John Roberts to be chief justice 13 years ago. Roberts was confirmed on a 78-22 vote in 2005. But some buyer’s remorse about Roberts has set in since then. Read more.
Greg Sargent, Washington Post: It is unlikely that Democrats will be able to block Brett Kavanaugh, but they can do all they can to clarify the stakes. They must press Kavanaugh to clarify his thinking on the question of whether presidents are above the law, or more specifically, how much power presidents have with regard to investigations into themselves. Read more.
Marc A. Thiessen, Washington Post: It is difficult to imagine any Republican senator opposing President Trump’s nomination of Brett Kavanaugh, a judge with impeccable credentials, strong intellect and sterling character. And no one is praying harder for Republican unity than the three Democratic senators who are up for reelection this fall in states Trump won by double digits. Read more.
Los Angeles Times editorial board: With his nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court, President Trump has chosen an experienced federal judge with a conservative record whose profile is less ideological than those of some other candidates he considered. Given the number of fire-breathing right-wing judges that Trump had to choose from, he could have done a whole lot worse. Read more.
San Diego Union-Tribune editorial board: In getting to nominate two Supreme Court justices in his first 18 months on the job, President Donald Trump has an opportunity to quickly shape his legacy in a way that many of his predecessors never had. In choosing Brett Kavanaugh, Trump has chosen a deeply experienced nominee with 300 opinions under his belt who appears well within the judicial mainstream. Read more.
San Francisco Chronicle editorial board: President Trump promised to select retiring Justice Anthony Kennedy’s successor from a Federalist Society-vetted list that serves as a sort of TSA PreCheck for right-wing judges. Brett Kavanaugh is expected to have predictably reactionary positions as well as the skill to hide them behind a dull facade during confirmation hearings. Read more.
San Jose Mercury News editorial board: President Trump’s nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the U.S. Supreme Court is a disaster for the technology industry and the users of tech products. His positions on such critical issues as net neutrality, privacy, executive power and immigration are serious threats that could set back the tech world for decades. Read more.
Here’s our initial take on Brett Kavanaugh, focusing on the role of Sens. Dianne Feinstein and Kamala Harris of California in the confirmation process.
Los Angeles Times: Seemingly every move the Trump administration has made when it comes to health care has been designed to maximize the harm to the insurance programs launched or expanded under Obamacare. Read more.
San Jose Mercury News: The State Water Resources Control Board provided a voice of sanity to California’s water wars Friday. The board recommended significant increases in the water flowing through the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta in order to preserve its long-term health. Read more.
Santa Rosa Press Democrat: When the Judicial Council, which oversees California’s courts, announced in May that records of financial settlements involving courts would be public, it seemed like a win for the public’s right to know. It was less of a win than everyone thought. Read more.
Frank Bruni, New York Times: Enough about the Freedom Caucus. Enough about the Democratic Socialists of America. More politicians – and most Americans – occupy the expansive territory in between. That’s where the pivotal races in 2018 are being fought. Read more.
Ruben Navarrette Jr., Washington Post: Abolish ICE? As political catchphrases go, it'll do just fine. It's pithy and punchy. It fits on a bumper sticker. Whether it infuriates or inspires you, it fires you up. The one thing the slogan doesn't do is make you think, because that is not the point of it. Read more.
Leonard Pitts Jr., Miami Herald: In a slew of recent high-profile episodes, police have been called out on black people for reasons so trivial, nonsensical and stupid as to beggar belief. They have also provided a window into the challenge of existing, minding your own business, just trying to go about your day, while black. Read more.
Tweets of the day
Many countries in NATO, which we are expected to defend, are not only short of their current commitment of 2% (which is low), but are also delinquent for many years in payments that have not been made. Will they reimburse the U.S.?— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 10, 2018
No US policy or strategy in Europe can succeed without a strong #NATO alliance. Allies can & must have candid discussions about differences. But unrestrained attacks on our closest partners will only sow dissent among our allies & embolden our adversaries. https://t.co/D8HLQaF5sB— John McCain (@SenJohnMcCain) July 10, 2018
BREAKING: #NATO Secretary General @jensstoltenberg releases new 2018 defence spending estimates:— Dylan P. White (@dylanpwhite) July 10, 2018
• Cuts have stopped
• 4th straight year of real increase
• 8 Allies expected to hit 2%
“European Allies & Canada will add an extra $266 billion between now and 2024”#NATOSummit
As he heads to the #NATOSummit, Trump should remember that @NATO members host 28 U.S. military bases around the world, covering $2.5 billion in basing costs. Our allies make us stronger, safer, and more secure. pic.twitter.com/M8omKDAMab— National Security Action (@natsecaction) July 10, 2018