Last night’s Republican debates finally got to one of the most important issues to conservatives: the Supreme Court. The issue debuted in the early “undercard” debate, and was raised again in the main event by CNN reporter Dana Bash.
Bush had the first chance to weigh in. He said some really good things about the need to appoint judges with a proven record, signaled that he agrees that we could do better than Chief Justice Roberts despite the fact that he has made some good decisions, and then finished strong by underscoring his willingness to fight hard for great nominees:
[DANA BASH]: Governor Bush, let’s talk about the issue that’s very important to Republican voters, and that’s the Supreme Court. After Chief Justice John Roberts voted to uphold Obamacare twice, Senator Cruz criticized your brother for appointing John Roberts to the Supreme Court.
Looking back on it, did your brother make a mistake?
BUSH: [. . .] I will talk about what I will do as it relates to appointing Supreme Court Justices. We need to make sure that we have justices that, with a proven experienced record of respect for upholding the constitution. That is what we need. We can’t have — the history in recent past is appoint people that have no experience so that you can’t get attacked.
And, that makes it harder for people to have confidence that they won’t veer off . . .
BASH: . . . Is John Roberts one of those people?
BUSH: John Roberts has made some really good decisions, for sure, but he did not have a proven, extensive record that would have made the clarity the important thing, and that’s what we need to do. And, I’m willing to fight for those nominees to make sure that they get passed. You can’t do it the politically expedient way anymore. This is the culture in Washington. You have to fight hard for these appointments. This is perhaps the most important thing that the next president will do. . . . But, the simple fact is that going forward, what we need to do is to have someone that has a long standing set of rulings that consistently makes it clear that he is a focused, exclusively on upholding the Constitution of the United States so they won’t try to use the bench as a means to which legislate. . . . And, that’s what we should do, and I hope I’ll be working members of the United States Senate to fight hard for the passage of people that have that kind of qualification.