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Opinion

Readers React: Trump’s next Supreme Court pick will make Anthony Kennedy look like a flaming liberal

President Donald Trump Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch
President Trump and Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy walk outside the White House on April 10, 2017.
(Jabin Botsford / Washington Post)

To the editor: As a candidate, Donald Trump touted his list of potential high court picks early on. That highly unusual step locked in plutocrats’ campaign contributions and evangelicals’ votes.

President Trump owes his election — and imperviousness to removal from office — to unwavering support from his plutocratic patrons and the evangelical masses.

In return, those reliably staunch supporters have pushed Trump to appoint jurists who above all will uphold the 2010 Citizens United decision, so as to keep wealthy donors’ dark money flowing into GOP coffers, and overturn Roe vs. Wade, so as to end legal abortions.

The retiring Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy will seem a flaming liberal compared to whomever the president picks to replace him.

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Edgar M. Martinez, Orcutt, Calif.

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To the editor: U.S. history traditionally has been taught in schools over two semesters, with the Civil War as the divide. Schools now offer the post-World War II era as a separate course.

Since the war, the change from liberals to conservatives on the Supreme Court has coincided with our republic’s conversion to an oligarchy. The change is now complete: The court joins the administration and Congress in pushing this rising tide.

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Power and wealthy are now highly concentrated. Laws are now considered based on how they might affect one individual’s freedom rather than doing the most good for the greatest number of people.

I am unsettled by the swing away from our post-war optimism that was characterized by altruism. Our future is bleak.

James Severtson, Reseda

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To the editor: There have been important changes since Neil Gorsuch was appointed to the Supreme Court in early 2017.

The president’s former campaign manager now has a criminal trial date. One of Trump’s early foreign policy advisors has pleaded guilty to lying about his attempt to get damaging information on Hillary Clinton from a Russian source. Key players in the president’s inner circle may actually be criminally indicted in the next several months.

Until the president himself is cleared of the same wrongdoings of some of the people who have surrounded him, he should not get to make any more lifetime appointments to the Supreme Court or other judicial bodies.

Scott Anderson, Los Angeles

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To the editor: Trump could smoothe a lot of feathers and even appear to be a statesman who can rise above the political fray if he names one man to the Supreme Court vacancy: federal appeals court Judge Merrick Garland, the man who was nominated by President Obama to fill the seat that ultimately went to Justice Neil Gorsuch.

It would give Garland the up-or-down vote he so richly deserved as well as stem some of the chatter about the court becoming a predictable political tool.

Food for thought, Mr. President.

Ken Kurtis, Los Angeles

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