It’s Monday, OnPolitics readers!
Here’s something you might have missed last week:
Former Vice President Mike Pence said Friday there was no way he could or would have overturned the results of the 2020 presidential election, adding that former President Donald Trump was “wrong” to suggest otherwise.
“Frankly there is no idea more un-American than the notion that any one person could choose the American president,” Pence said in a speech to the conservative Federalist Society in Florida. “Under the Constitution, I had no right to change the outcome of our election.”
Pence also said Vice President Kamala Harris will be unable to overturn the election results if a GOP candidate wins the White House in 2024.
Pence has laid the groundwork for a potential bid for the presidency, which could put him directly in contention with Trump for the Republican nomination should the former president decide to run again.
It’s just Chelsey today, with today’s top stories out of Washington.
Trump, McConnell showdown the one to watch
A lingering animosity between Trump and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., may boil over into the primary elections, weakening Republican candidates ahead of the general elections and impairing the party’s efforts to retake the Senate.
The tense relationship between the two came to a head when McConnell said publicly in 2021 that Trump incited the Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol. Recently, Trump has pressed for McConnell’s demotion from leadership, while the Kentucky Republican has declined to addressed the former president’s impact on the upcoming midterm elections.
Analysts say GOP candidates are forced to avoid picking a side, but some Republicans say Trump is already controlling the party.
“I’m sure McConnell is concerned that we might nominate – in what should be a good year for Republicans – candidates who will lose the election,” said Republican strategist Doug Heye. “McConnell is very aware of this and he clearly wants to avoid it; Donald Trump doesn’t care about it.”
Want more on ins and outs of the Republican party?: Reps. Liz Cheney, R-Wyo. and Adam Kinzinger, R-Ill. were censured by the Republican National Committee Friday for participating on the House select committee investigating the Jan. 6 insurrection and for opposing Trump.
Real quick: stories you’ll want to read
- Who is possible SCOTUS pick Leondra Kruger?: The associate justice on the California Supreme Court is on President Joe Biden’s short list to one day possibly replace Justice Stephen Breyer.
- Single suicide bomber responsible for Kabul airport massacre: The finding is from the Pentagon’s investigation into the ISIS-K terror attack that killed 13 U.S. troops last year.
- U.S. infantry troops arrive in Poland: The deployment is part of Biden’s orders to send 1,700 troops to the region amid fears of a Russian invasion of Ukraine.
- Unvaccinated dad loses custody of kids: A court order allows the New Brunswick, Canada father to interact with his three children — one of whom is immunocompromised — over Zoom.
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SCOTUS dispute refocuses equity for Black women
Biden is committed to nominating a Black woman to the nation’s highest court — a promise some Americans have a difficult time accepting.
A recent ABC/Ipsos poll showed three-quarters of Americans want the president to consider “all possible nominees” when choosing whom should replace Breyer on the bench. However, experts say the poll was not administered to a representative sample.
Despite questionable results, the poll shined a light on old arguments regarding the country’s reluctance to view Black women as qualified professionals, according to political advocates and experts.
“This is not America’s moment. This is America’s history,” Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., told USA TODAY. “Racism is institutionalized in this country—whether we’re talking about a Black woman being nominated for such a position as the Supreme Court or you’re talking about a Black man being nominated for any high-ranking position.”
Equity advocates argue most Supreme Court nominees — roughly 94%—have been white men since the high court’s creation in 1789.
There’s a new book coming out about former vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin. Will you give it a read? Until next time, OnPolitics readers! — Chelsey
OnPolitics: GOP split between Trump, Mitch McConnell