Following Justice Antonin Scalia’s unexpected passing, his will has been made public by his personal attorney. The bulk of his estate will be split among his wife, children and grandchildren. A small portion of his sizable fortune, estimated at over $50 million, will go to the NRA.
In an unusual move, the late associate justice provided a directive in his will that in the event of his death while still serving on the Court, he wished to have his seat filled by a well-known, but divisive, public figure: Dick Cheney.
Of course Scalia’s wish has no legal or constitutional bearing on who the next justice will be. The sole responsibility for choosing a Supreme Court justice is squarely left to the president.
When informed of Scalia’s wish, Cheney said, “Antonin Scalia was a great man, a true conservative with a brilliant mind. I am honored he would want me to be his successor on the bench. I certainly would consider such a position if it were made available to me.”
President Obama has been rumored to have a short list of potential nominees. It is very unlikely Cheney made the cut. In fact, when informed of Scalia’s wish, Obama was reported as having said something akin to “when hell freezes over.”
Republicans have stated they will oppose any Obama nominee to fill Scalia’s seat. They have promised to not even consider or vote on Obama’s pick.
“The American people should have a voice in the selection of their next Supreme Court Justice. Therefore, this vacancy should not be filled until we have a new President,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky said in a statement.
The Republican strategy assumes a Republican victory in November.
Ted Cruz and Donald Trump, the two frontrunners for the Republican presidential nomination, were asked if they would consider a Cheney appointment.
“Dick Cheney is a great man, a true conservative with a brilliant mind, “ said Cruz. “I would be honored to offer up his nomination to the bench.”
Donald Trump was not so enthusiastic about Dick Cheney as an associate justice. “Isn’t he the guy who pushed Bush into invading Iraq?” asked Trump. “I would prefer nominating someone outside of politics or even the legal profession. I would give serious thought to my good friend, Bill O’Reilly. Great man and a true conservative with a brilliant mind.”
As a Supreme Court justice, Antonin Scalia must have known he had no constitutional power to pick or even suggest his replacement. Many scholars are attributing Scalia’s unusual request to the fact he had been showing signs of Alzheimer’s for the past 10 years.
Photo | Mark Avery/Orange County Register/ZUMA Press
warning: If you did not realize it, this article is satire! Of course, followers of this blog know that.