by Mike Davis
Believe it or not, the junior senator from Michigan is Gary Peters – not Chuck Schumer. For Michiganders, that hasn’t been clear in the past six years because almost no daylight exists between Senator Peters’s actions and the marching orders given by the Democrat Leader from New York.
From voting to impeach President Donald Trump to opposing almost all of his highly qualified judicial nominees, Gary Peters falls in line every time. In fact, Peters has voted with his party’s liberal leader almost 90% of the time.
The invisible incumbent claims to be an independent voice in his caucus, but the data doesn’t lie. Only a handful of Senate Democrats voted with their party more often than Gary Peters. In other words, he represents their modern movement – a party that wants to remake the Senate to guarantee a generation of liberal control and redesign the Supreme Court.
Peters ranks among the least effective senators in the country, so it’s no surprise that his opposition to President Donald Trump failed to slow the transformation of the federal judiciary through jurists who will uphold our Constitution and respect the rule of law. The President has appointed 220 Article III judges so far, selecting individuals in the mold of the late, great Justice Antonin Scalia. This includes recently sworn-in Justice Amy Coney Barrett, a respected conservative and former clerk to Scalia, who balances the demands of motherhood atop the legal world with fortitude.
Like a good soldier, Gary Peters fell in line to oppose her nomination this past week, despite her uncontested qualifications, her rating of “highly-qualified” by the American Bar Association, and her Midwestern roots.
Once again, his vote came as no surprise. Senator Peters sided with Schumer in opposing Supreme Court Justices Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh too, even when Michiganders wanted their senator to help confirm judges who understand their modest but critical role in our constitutional system. Liberals, you see, want judges to act as politicians in robes.
What explains the Peters position time and time again? Obedience to his commander, Chuck Schumer.
Gary’s poor judgment when it comes to judicial nominees, including opposing highly qualified nominees like Sixth Circuit Judges Amul Thapar, an Indian-American and former federal prosecutor, and even John Nalbandian, whose mother was born in a Japanese internment camp, led the editorial board of The Detroit News to point out that “[Peters] has backed the Democratic Senate leadership on nearly every key vote in his first term, including opposing three well-qualified Supreme Court nominees. He cannot be counted on to check his party’s worst ambitions.”
Gary Peters simply cannot be trusted to represent the values of Michiganders in the United States Senate.
Make no mistake, if the party that controls Peters regains control of the upper chamber, Democrats will almost certainly pack the Supreme Court. This call to add additional seats — a move intended to “pack” the court with liberal judges — is an idea so extreme that even President Franklin D. Roosevelt was unable to achieve it at a time when Congress rubber-stamped the rest of his agenda. And just last year, the late-Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg described this sort of power grab as “a bad idea.”
Gary Peters, interestingly, claims to oppose this effort, calling it a “distraction.” But Michiganders should ask how he intends to oppose this move if Democrats gain power. Would he vote against such legislation? If he doesn’t have the courage to demand an answer from his party leaders now, how can voters expect him to have the courage to vote against the plan later, with the pressure of the entire liberal movement focused on him?
Michiganders will not be fooled. They see through this sham and know that Chuck Schumer and Gary Peters plan to wage a radical assault on judicial independence if they win in November, limiting our ability to speak freely, worship our God, and protect our families.
Michiganders and all Americans need strong, principled leadership now more than ever. Gary Peters’ opposition to qualified nominees like Amy Coney Barrett reflects the fact that he sides with Schumer more than his constituents. Michigan deserves a senator that will put their interests first, not the interests of the Democrat Leader from New York.
The old adage that “all politics are local” is as true today as ever. Michiganders will hold Gary Peters accountable for his actions.
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Mike Davis is the founder and president of the Article III Project (A3P). Last Congress (2017-19), Davis served as the chief counsel for nominations to then-Chairman Chuck Grassley on the Senate Judiciary Committee, where he served as staff leader for the confirmation of Justice Kavanaugh and a record-number of federal circuit judges. Davis previously clerked for Justice Neil M. Gorsuch, both on the Supreme Court and Tenth Circuit.