White House Exploits Republicans’ Identity Politics Hypocrisy to Refute Supreme Court Criticisms

White House Exploits Republicans’ Identity Politics Hypocrisy to Refute Supreme Court Criticisms
AP Photo/Mariam Zuhaib

Republicans are often fond of claiming to oppose identity politics. It is one of the talking points they use when confronted with the Democrats’ obsession with race, sexuality, and other types of identities. However, debates like the one occurring over President Joe Biden’s eventual Supreme Court nominee don’t typically work in Republicans’ favor, and the White House is wisely exploiting this particular weakness.

As the president is still considering which candidate to nominate, his team is courting GOP lawmakers in an attempt to “grease the wheels,” so to speak. Biden wishes to have his nominee confirmed on a bipartisan basis, if possible. The Hill reported that the administration “has been proactive about reaching out to Republicans and courting the support of senators who might reach across the aisle to back Biden’s eventual pick.”

However, this process might not run as smoothly as Biden hopes. Republicans have already been criticizing him for announcing he would be replacing Justice Stephen Breyer with a black woman. Conservatives called him out for playing identity politics instead of simply putting forth the most qualified candidate. Unfortunately for the right, the Democrats are politically savvy enough to highlight the shameless hypocrisy of the high-profile conservatives criticizing the president. The Hill reported:

But officials have been just as quick to cite the GOP’s own comments praising the choice of a woman to fill a seat on the high court during the confirmation process in which former President Trump chose Justice Amy Coney Barrett to replace the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

Remember that?

We’re all old enough to remember when former President Donald Trump declared he would be replacing Ginsburg with a woman. He made the declaration at a campaign rally in North Carolina. CNN reported:

As the crowd began chanting “Fill That Seat!” Trump said he had not made a final choice but was inclined to choose a woman — and then, with a theatrical flourish and no hint of irony, took a snap poll of the crowd to gauge whether they preferred a man or a woman to fill the seat of a justice who was an equal rights icon.

“It will be a woman, a very talented, very brilliant woman,” Trump said, after the crowd overwhelmingly cheered for a female nominee. “I haven’t chosen yet, but we have numerous women on the list.”

According to The Hill, the White House will be hammering home the fact that despite claiming to oppose identity politics, Republicans have had no problem doing so in the past when it comes to Supreme Court nominees. The author wrote:

A handful of Republicans have already suggested Biden’s yet-to-be-named nominee will be opposed just by the president’s pledge to nominate a Black woman to the court. The White House has been quick to point to Trump, who said he would nominate a woman to replace Ginsburg when she died in September 2020.

The Biden administration is already bringing up the before-and-after comments made by Republican politicians. Last month, Sen. Roger Wicker (R-MS) said in a radio interview that Biden’s choice would be a “beneficiary” of affirmative action. “The irony is that the Supreme Court is at the very same time hearing cases about this sort of affirmative racial discrimination while adding someone who is the beneficiary of this sort of quota,” he said.

But in 2020, Wicker was singing a different tune. When Trump nominated Justice Amy Coney Barrett, Wicker gushed over the prospect. According to The Hill, he said, “I have five granddaughters, the oldest one is 10. I think Justice Amy Coney Barrett will prove to be an inspiration to these five granddaughters and to my grown daughters.”

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) also criticized the president for pledging to choose a black woman, calling his decision “offensive” because he was excluding other candidates from the beginning. However, White House press secretary Jen Psaki circled back on him and brought up the senator’s comments during Barrett’s confirmation hearing when he said, “I think you’re an amazing role model for little girls. What advice would you give little girls?” The Hill reported.

The administration also brought up President Ronald Reagan, who also promised to appoint a woman to the Supreme Court. He later nominated and appointed Justice Sandra Day O’Connor.

If one would have listened for Republicans criticizing Trump for vowing to appoint a woman to the Supreme Court, they would have heard nothing but a chorus of crickets chirping their ambivalence on the whole matter. Why?

Because Republicans don’t actually have a problem with identity politics.

But the issue isn’t whether the GOP digs identity politics. The issue is the lack of honesty on the matter. If we want to play identity politics, then let’s do it the right way, not in the destructive way the Democrats use it. This is not a situation where Republicans can have their cake and eat it too.

If we want to be taken seriously by those who might consider supporting the conservative movement, we can either reject identity politics entirely or embrace it fully and use it to empower more Americans — instead of exploiting them like the left. The “good for me, but not for thee” approach doesn’t work for Democrats, so when it comes to identity, it sure as hell won’t work for Republicans.

Trending on RedState Video