A combination of historical illiteracy and political greed led to this misstatement by CNN legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin.
CNN legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin had a novel argument Tuesday for why Supreme Court nominations have become stiffer political battles in recent years.
Former U.S. Acting Solicitor General Neal Katyal said the confirmation fight for President Donald Trump’s nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh is a “big deal” because he will be able to serve for decades if confirmed. After Katyal named some of the expansive rulings from retiring Justice Anthony Kennedy, Toobin said the current norm defies how the Founding Fathers envisioned Court nominations.
“When the Constitution was written in the late 18th century, people were expected to die in their 50s,” Toobin said. “The Framers never contemplated that these terms would regularly go to 30-plus years as they do now.”
Limited terms for Supreme Court justices is the current hot new argument by the left. But Toobin’s claim is completely wrong.
Toobin confuses average lifespans in a society rife with war and disease with expected lifespans for members of the upper classes. The Founders did not expect to die in their 50s. Nor did they expect Supreme Court justices to do so.
John Jay, the first Chief Justice, died at 83. John Rutledge, the second justice and second Chief Justice, did die at 60. But William Cushing, one of the original 6, served out a 20 year term and died at the age of 78. James Wilson, a Founding Father, died at 55. James Iredell died at an early age, however, John Blair Jr. lived until 68.
Read the full story from Front Page Mag
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