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Today NBC’s Leigh Ann Caldwell reported that retired Justice Anthony Kennedy urged the God-King to nominate Brett Kavanaugh as his replacement and Politico’s Christopher Cadelago, Nancy Cook, and Andrew Restuccia reported essentially the same story:

Kennedy’s seat, meantime, seemed destined to go to Kavanaugh, thanks in part to the glowing review of Kennedy, whose son, Justin, knows Donald Trump Jr. through New York real estate circles, and whose other adult child has connections to Trump world via the president’s 2016 Silicon Valley adviser Peter Thiel, most recently when the Kennedy firm Disruptive Technology Advisers worked with Thiel’s Palantir Technologies. Both Kennedy sons have been guests at the White House, and Trump had nice things to say about Justin in comments to Kennedy caught on a hot mic last year.

For a White House that had been taking the pulse of the court through the deep network of Kennedy law clerks, his retirement had long been on their wish list. And a year after Trump chose Gorsuch to serve with his mentor, he picked another ex-Kennedy aide to join him on the high court, a move that will shape how the president and the retired justice are remembered.

So of course wingnuts seized on Caldwell’s clarification to dismiss this as a “fake news” conspiracy theory.

Meanwhile, the God-King pardoned two Oregon men whose arson conviction triggered the wingnut takeover of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge, the latest in a series of pardons for celebrity wingnuts.

Is the problem with Kavanaugh’s, as Matthew Yglesias and Ezra Klein argue, precisely that Kavanaugh is a ‘normal conservative jurist’ at a time when conservativism is openly anti-democratic?


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