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Megan McArdle

Liberals Will Not Like How This Revenge Plot Ends

An all-out war against Trump’s Supreme Court nominee will backfire at the polls in 2018.
What's the endgame?

What's the endgame?

Photographer: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Liberals are angry about Neil Gorsuch, and I don’t blame them.

Thanks to the unexpected death of Antonin Scalia, they were so close to flipping the balance of the Supreme Court that they could taste it. Vast possibilities seemed to be opening up to move us towards a government that was more friendly to regulation, less friendly to social conservatism, and overall much more congenial to liberal visions of the role of government. Then Republicans announced that they simply weren’t going to hold a vote on Merrick Garland, the center-left judge that Obama nominated to replace him. They were well within their legal rights, and there was some precedent. But nonetheless, this obviously went farther than previous blocks -- most notably, because Democrats lost the election. If I were a liberal, I would be filled with the kind of blind, existential rage that … well, that filled conservatives when Democrats passed Obamacare on a straight-line party vote using a parliamentary maneuver.