While campaigning in Iowa, Joe Biden was asked if he would consider nominating Barack Obama to the Supreme Court.
I guess it was a serious question, and Joe Biden actually responded: “if he’d take it.”
Wall Street Journal reporter Ken Thomas was the first to report this exchange on Twitter.
Biden asked here in Washington, Iowa, if he would ever nominate former President Obama to serve on the Supreme Court. “If he’d take it, yes,” Biden says.
— Ken Thomas (@KThomasDC) December 28, 2019
Biden has never missed an opportunity to namedrop Barack Obama and remind voters he was Obama’s vice-president. Biden has even claimed he specifically asked Obama not to endorse him—no one really believes that, but it’s still something he says. Earlier this month he even claimed, “I don’t need an Obama endorsement.” If you look at national polls, this is arguably true. He’s the frontrunner nationally, but he’s struggling in some of the early voting states like Iowa and New Hampshire to take the lead there. Losses in those states might make it difficult for him to win Nevada and South Carolina, where his lead has been cut into significantly.
But, let’s get back to the absurd idea of Barack Obama on the Supreme Court. Obama is about as qualified to be on the Supreme Court as I am to be an astronaut.
Obama often talks about him being a constitutional law professor, but, as president, he repeatedly exceeded his constitutional authority. There are many examples of Obama flouting the Constitution. Most involve his inclination to bypass Congress to legislate via executive action. But the most significant example of Obama’s lack of constitutional aptitude is how he was repeatedly rebuked by the Supreme Court.
In NLRB v. Noel Canning, the Supreme Court ruled 9-0 that Obama had made three unconstitutional appointments when the U.S. Senate was not in recess.
In McCullen v. Coakley, the Obama administration filed an amicus brief in favor of a Massachusetts law banning free speech within thirty-five feet of an abortion clinic. The law was unanimously found to be unconstitutional.
In Riley v. California the Obama administration filed an amicus brief in support of warrantless searches of cellphones of American citizens—and lost in a unanimous decision.
In U.S. v. Jones, Obama’s Justice Department tried to convince the Supreme Court that the federal government doesn’t need a warrant to track your car with a hidden GPS device for any reason and lost, again in a unanimous decision.
Obama’s record with the United States Supreme Court is the “worst record of any modern presidency,” according to Ilya Shapiro of the CATO Institute. “In the first 6.5 years of Obama’s presidency (January 2009 to June 2015), the government lost unanimously at the Supreme Court 23 times, an average of 3.62 cases per year,” he explained. Over eight years, the Bush administration only lost an average of 1.875 cases per year, and Clinton administration 2.875. What about all cases, not just unanimous? While the U.S. government had an average win rate of 70 percent before the Supreme Court before Obama arrived, Obama won less than 50 percent of the time.
Barack Obama’s approach to the presidency was that of a dictator who believed his agenda trumped the Constitution. While he previously acknowledged the Constitution prevented him from changing immigration law, when Congress failed to pass the DREAM Act, he simply implemented it via executive order. He unilaterally reinterpreted Title IX beyond its original intent to force schools to allow boys to use girls’ bathrooms, locker rooms, and play on girls’ sports teams. Obama even believed he had the authority to unilaterally raise taxes, and to assassinate U.S. citizens without due process.
Obama doesn’t know the difference between the Constitution and Rules for Radicals.
The whole idea of Obama on the Supreme Court is laughable… and scary. I know Biden thinks he’s pandering to the base of the Democratic Party, but in reality, he’s proposing a constitutional nightmare.
Matt Margolis is the author of Trumping Obama: How President Trump Saved Us From Barack Obama’s Legacy and the bestselling book The Worst President in History: The Legacy of Barack Obama. You can follow Matt on Twitter @MattMargolis