We have turned the method of selecting Supreme Court Justices into a political blood bath. In doing so, we have cheapened the Court. That is, of course, if you agree with me that law and politics are similar but different things.
Here is a proposal that might lessen the problem:
- Justices on the Supreme Court, to the extent humanly possible, should do law and not politics even if the result is not to their liking.
- The President of the United States has the absolute power to nominate whomever he or she wants.
- The power of the President to nominate cannot be fundamentally altered.
- But the President should not fear advice.
- I propose the following:
- Congress enact a statute that allows the Justices of the Supreme Court to unanimously propose to the President three potential justices for his consideration—each Justice must agree to each proposed nominee.
- The President may accept or reject any such suggestion, but he shall not act until the unanimous Court has submitted the recommendation except as provided below.
- If within 30 days of a vacancy the Justices cannot agree among the three proposed justices or otherwise fail to provide the President with the list of proposed nominees, the President may proceed accordingly.
- If there is insufficient time in the sole and absolute discretion of the President to receive and consider the advice of the Justices, the President may proceed to nominate a person without waiting for the advice from the Justices.
- The President is in no way bound to accept the recommended nominations of the Justices.
What say you?
Richard G. Kopf
Senior United States District Judge (NE)