It’s no surprise that Democrats are confused when it comes to the concept of Constitutional originalism – the judicial philosophy espoused by judges like former Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia and current nominee to the court, Amy Coney Barrett. It is, after all, about as far from the left’s take on the “living Constitution” as one can possibly get. To Democrats, the Constitution is a breathing document that can be updated by judges to reflect the whims of society at any given time. To conservatives, the Constitution means what it says and, to the extent that it must be “interpreted,” should be read to reflect both the text and the thinking of the people who wrote it.
At her confirmation hearing on Tuesday, Barrett said that she is a proud originalist who looks first and foremost to the written word of the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, and the amendments that have been passed in the years since the document was first penned.
“In English, that means that I interpret the Constitution as a law,” Barrett said, “and that I interpret its text as text, and I understand it to have the meaning that it had at the time people ratified it. So that meaning doesn’t change over time and it’s not up to me to update it or infuse my own policy views into it.”
Democrats, of course, know it sounds really bad when they just come right out and admit what they really think about the Constitution – that they would rather trust the wisdom of people like Ruth Bader Ginsburg than the actual standing law of the land.
So they do what Hillary Clinton did on Tuesday.
“At the time the Constitution was ratified, women couldn’t vote, much less be judges,” Clinton tweeted.
Or this finely-written nonsense from actor Bradley Whitford: “Unless you’re a fan of slavery, think women should have no rights at all, and that indigenous people are a different species that deserves to be eradicated, ‘originalism’ is an Orwellian doily wrapped around a morally bankrupt turd.”
Get the idea? Liberals either believe or they want others to believe that a constitutional originalist only goes by what was originally in the Constitution. They don’t believe in any amendments passed and ratified in the intervening 200+ years, they just go by what’s in the Founding text. This is utter idiocy, and you would have to be far stupider than Hillary Clinton (or, we assume, Whitford) to actually think this way.
The point, as it has been since Trump named Amy Coney Barrett as his nominee, is just to score points and drum up fear among dumb liberals on Twitter.