Republican lawmakers and sedition supporters are irate that the end of Roe was leaked in advance
You might have expected that Republican lawmakers would have been giddy last night with the leaked news that the newly far-right Supreme Court is on the cusp of granting their half-century-old dream, the dream of erasing abortion rights that was the very reason the party began putting forth those new archconservative nominees to begin with. Nope. Republican lawmakers were and continue to be absolutely furious, alleging that the rare (but hardly unprecedented) leak from the court is an outrage that must not be allowed to stand.
And so a parade of willing seditionists, defenders of corruption, and those who keep voting to block investigations into any of it in order to advance Republican power have spent the last 24 hours screaming about the norms while saying little to nothing about the raw cruelty of Alito's leaked far-far-right opinion, or its hints that the Trump-packed court intends to use the Alito framework to undo rights ranging from LGBT marriage to contraception to anti-"sodomy" laws.
No, the Republican Party that both mounted an attempted coup and is still working, to this day, to block the investigations into who organized the effort and who they had help from—they're very mad about the Alito-written draft opinion getting leaked. It didn't even take an hour for that to become The Talking Point.
The Senate’s two most visible insurrection backers weighed in, of course. Sen. Ted Cruz was outraged by the “blatant attempt to intimidate the Court through public pressure rather than reasoned argument,” which you know is bullshit because insurrection. At the same time, Sen. Josh Hawley immediately went weird conspiracy crank because apparently not even history-shaking reality is as exciting as the theories in his own head.
Given the apparently coordinated nature of this hit on the Court, I certainly hope every Democrat Senator is ready to answer whether they saw the opinion before Politico published it, and if they know who leaker is— Josh Hawley (@Josh Hawley) 1651582720
There’s no part of that that makes sense, which is how you know Josh Hawley wrote it himself. He also has a solution: The Libs Made Me Fascist Harder!
The Court should not abide this coordinated assault by the Left. Issue the decision nowhttps://twitter.com/TinaSmithMN/status/1521306121713205249\u00a0\u2026— Josh Hawley (@Josh Hawley) 1651544116
Elsewhere in Team Active Sedition, we find that same “intimidating,” coupled with a “radical left.” It’s not attempting to overthrow the U.S. government or packing the courts with unqualified hardliners that’s radical; it’s some clerk or technical worker inside the Supreme Court leaking the end of abortion rights in this nation before Team Sedition’s justices have fully crossed the t’s and dotted the i’s.
The goal of this unprecedented breach is to intimidate sitting Supreme Court justices. This is yet another example of how the radical left intends to \u201cfundamentally transform\u201d America.https://twitter.com/joshgerstein/status/1521289548927545357\u00a0\u2026— Senator Ron Johnson (@Senator Ron Johnson) 1651547952
The man who broke the court himself, Mitch McConnell, repeats the notion that the real “mob rule” is a random leaker inside the Supreme Court. “Escalation,” “radical left,” “attack,” and “intimidate” are all used, giving the impression of coordinated violence akin to, say, insurrection to describe reporters getting a leaked document from an unknown government source.
Last night\u2019s stunning breach was an attack on the independence of the Supreme Court. By every indication, this was yet another escalation in the radical left\u2019s ongoing campaign to bully and intimidate federal judges and substitute mob rule for the rule of law.pic.twitter.com/wvigWvPqm7— Leader McConnell (@Leader McConnell) 1651587108
What’s important here, however, is to remember that McConnell is the most prolific liar in all of government now that Trump is gone. He literally gives speeches like this on a daily basis, all explaining that “the left” are the real radicals and that he is a man of high principle who would never do the things he just did. Mitch McConnell invented new rule after new rule to make sure the Supreme Court slid to the current archconservative dismantlers even as America continued to vote for Democratic presidents to undo it. There’s nobody who’s been more radical; a press leak may be embarrassing, but it’s neither an insurrection nor a spate of new laws blocking Americans from their ballots.
Leaking a draft opinion of the Supreme Court destroys trust among the justices and undermines justice. The justices must be able to share their thoughts candidly\u2014and vulnerably\u2014with one another. They are judges deciding cases, not legislators writing laws that need public input.— Justin Amash (@Justin Amash) 1651543238
Yeah. Yeah, that’s it. Alito’s hyper-cruel opinion must be hidden from the public lest Alito feel vulnerable about it. Every theocratic fascist is secretly a wilting flower, which is why we’re getting all these new laws banning books that make people like Sam Freaking Alito feel bad.
Susan Collins:\u00a0\u201cIf this leaked draft opinion is the final decision and this reporting is accurate, it would be completely inconsistent with what Justice Gorsuch and Justice Kavanaugh said in their hearings and in our meetings in my office.\u201d— Manu Raju (@Manu Raju) 1651586644
OH MY GOD I’m just going to start filtering out any tweets or news stories that so much as mention Susan Collins’ name. Susan Collins could be replaced with a potted plant and it would make absolutely no difference in anyone’s lives, ever. Imagine basing a whole political career on the theme of being the single most gullible person in America—and getting reelected for it.
But the talking point is the talking point, and it’s still going.
Mentions on Fox News/Business so far today:\n\nAbortion: 40\nLeak: 49— Aaron Rupar (@Aaron Rupar) 1651584403
Hey, it’s Guy Who’s All About Projecting Dignity While His Party Collapses Into Fascism:
Also Sen. Lindsey Graham said something, and I don’t even care. Lindsey saved his top career meltdown for the purpose of railroading a serial sex predator through the confirmation process rather than abide testimony against him. We all already know what he thinks about the “dignity” of our court systems.
Instead, here’s another reminder that this other guy remains neck-deep in the attempt to nullify an American election rather than recognize the right of Americans to pick non-Republican winners:
What an actual "coordinated assault" looks like. https://twitter.com/HawleyMO/status/1521312406210764800\u00a0\u2026pic.twitter.com/cUXARACyKv— Tina Smith (@Tina Smith) 1651548748
What a toad this guy is. But the notion that “a Supreme Court leak is the real insurrection” has gotten a lot of traction among the people who … don’t think actual insurrections are bad.
No man I\u2019m pretty sure the actual insurrection was last January 6thpic.twitter.com/sPog3PqFER— Taylor Lorenz (@Taylor Lorenz) 1651546874
All right, that one’s simply amazing. It should come with its own theme song.
There is a distinct link between the curtailing of abortion rights and rising fascism, by the way.
There are two things to note that make Team Sedition’s posturing here even more grotesque than it first appears—aside from the uncanny link between restricting reproductive justice and authoritarianism/fascism. The first is that we sincerely don’t know who could have leaked this opinion or why, and we probably won’t know for a long time. There’s just as much reason to expect a conservative abortion opponent inside the court leaked the document to blame a secret liberal inside the court; if conservative justices were feeling uneasy about the sheer magnitude of what Alito intends to unravel, leaking the document would paint a target on whichever conservative justices were threatening to back out.
So it’s yet again the case that the Republicans insisting that their enemy, “the left,” are responsible for the latest crimes against Washington decency are basing those claims on fictions inside their own heads. They don’t know who leaked any more than the rest of us do, and they don’t know why.
The other detail that Republican outrage is conveniently ignoring is that while Supreme Court leaks are rare, they’re far from unprecedented. And leaking about Roe, in particular, is quite precedented!
In 1973, the result in Roe leaked to Time magazine. Justice Burger wanted all clerks to undergo lie detector tests, but Rehnquist and Brennan objected:pic.twitter.com/UkmOVzYYEL— JP Schnapper-Casteras (@JP Schnapper-Casteras) 1651543313
Unlike an attempt by House and Senate Republicans to nullify an American presidential election based on false claims and party-pushed hoaxes, leaks from the Supreme Court are not, in fact, unprecedented assaults on our democracy.
One can even make the case that our Supreme Court justices might behave a bit better if there were more leaks into how they arrive at their decisions, given this new court’s unwillingness to even issue written explanations of some of their most radical orders. Perhaps we would learn more about why the wife of a Supreme Court justice felt so confident about her own role in an attempted pro-Trump coup, and why that justice voted to block further evidence from coming to light. Perhaps we would learn why the court is currently pretending, very very hard, to be confused over whether constitutionally protected rights can be scrubbed out by any state willing to hire private bounty hunters to do it for them.
Perhaps we’d learn why Alito’s opinion leans so heavily into arguments that not just abortion rights need to be erased, but that civil rights legislation needs to be rolled back by several generations—back to the days when American women couldn’t open bank accounts without their husband’s permission, much less have control over their own human selves. Perhaps, though, we’d just learn that the current Supreme Court is just as devoted to forcing Republican rule onto the rest of us as the Josh Hawleys of the party are. They just don’t have to explain themselves when they do it.
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