Brett Kavanaugh And Sonia Sotomayor BOTH Partied With Partisans (Except For Sonia Sotomayor)

Brett Kavanaugh And Sonia Sotomayor BOTH Partied With Partisans (Except For Sonia Sotomayor)

Matt Schlapp, chairman of the Conservative Political Action Coalition, held a holiday party at his Virginia home on Friday and all the worst people were invited: Rep. Matt Gaetz and his wife Ginger, former White House press secretary Sean Spicer, Alex Acosta, Sebastian Gorka, Stephen and Katie Miller,Portland, Oregon invader Chad Wolf, Greta Van Susteren and John Coale, Laura Schlapp and Bryan Wells, Brendan Carr, Rep.-elect George Santos, Erin and Nick Perrine, Erik Prince, Ziad Ojakli, Peter Davidson, Steve Holland and Ben Terris.

This is the type of gathering where they serve a live werewolf at midnight, and mingling amongst the party guests was Brett Kavanaugh of the Supreme Court Justice Kavanaughs. This is hardly a shock. The Supreme Court, despite the most absurd arguments otherwise, is a political body. Conservative justices openly schmooze with Republicans and speak at rightwing functions. Justice Clarence Thomas is literally in bed with a January 6 coup plotter.

When Justice Amy Coney Barrett spoke at a Federalist Society function last month, she joked, "It’s really nice to have a lot of noise made not by protesters outside of my house." (We never said it was a good joke.) Obviously, she can recognize a receptive audience.


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It's especially revealing that Kavanaugh would attend a Matt Schlapp shindig. When Sen. Mitt Romney was disinvited from CPAC after voting to remove Donald Trump from office (the first time not the second), Schlapp mocked the many MAGA threats against his life: "I suppose if he wants to come as a non-conservative and debate an issue with us, maybe in the future we would have him come. This year, I'd actually be afraid for his physical safety, people are so mad at him."

However, conservatives blubbered buckets when protesters spoiled Kavanaugh's mediocre steak dinner or rudely stood outside his house like it was a common abortion clinic. They also cried foul when liberal Justice Sonia Sotomayor dined with Democratic leadership in January while the Court was considering arguments against the Biden administration's vaccine rules. Of course, that wasn't actually Sotomayor sharing apps with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer. Politico had confused the justice with Schumer's wife, Iris Weinshall, who's not a professional Sotomayor impersonator.

Conservatives even whined when women from the Capitol press corps posed for a photo with Pelosi, the first woman speaker of the House. You don't need to love her to recognize the historical importance. Elf on the shelf Ben Shapiro tweeted, "taking smiling pictures en masse with the people you're supposed to be covering doesn't exactly scream objective journalism." Earlier this year, Clarence Thomas and failed Senate candidate Herschel Walker were all smiles in a posed photo at the Supreme Court that Walker's campaign blasted out on social media. MSNBC host Lawrence O'Donnell claimed this was the first time a sitting Supreme Court justice had agreed to a photo op with a political candidate from any party.

Schlapp's party wasn't just filled with like-minded conservatives. There were so many active political operatives present it might as well have been a workplace gathering, except Human Resources didn't have to deal with any fallout. Stephen Miller's evil Wolfram & Hart-style organization America First Legal Foundation has cases pending before the Supreme Court. Although we doubt Miller would need to ply Kavanaugh with mistletoe martinis to get him on his side, the Supreme Court is supposed to avoid the appearance of a personal conflict.

Tonja Jacobi, a professor at Emory University School of Law, told Bloomberg, “Supreme Court justices should be extraordinarily careful in not only having no actual ethical difficulties but having no appearance of an ethical conundrum as well." That's a very pretty notion, but in practice, the conservative Supreme Court Justices take the position that they can do whatever the hell they want: They have lifetime appointments and we can go climb our thumbs.

[KXLY / Politico / Bloomberg]

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Stephen Robinson

Stephen Robinson is a writer and social kibbitzer based in Portland, Oregon. He writes make believe for Cafe Nordo, an immersive theatre space in Seattle. Once, he wrote a novel called “Mahogany Slade,” which you should read or at least buy. He's also on the board of the Portland Playhouse theatre. His son describes him as a “play typer guy."


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