Dear Senator Markey,
I am writing to give my opinion: I hope you encourage President Obama to nominate Merrick Garland to the Supreme Court in a recess appointment.
I am aware of the legal and political objections. Let me state my reasons in favor. Our country is about to be subject to an unprecedented attack on our freedoms and the institutions of or Republic. The attack, which has already shown its contours, will be based on appeal to the basest sentiments of bigotry, a complete disregard for the rational and civil discourse that we have become accustomed to, and a level of personal corruption and malfeasance that we normally associate with countries with much less developed histories of democracy.
Our institutions are strong, but not infinitely strong. With all due respect to your colleagues, I do not fully trust the Senate's willingness and ability to defend us from a concerted attack from inside, when political expedience and short term gain may suggest folding. I have known how democracies collapse; it is not a pretty sight. Unless we manage to block the subversion of our values from the very start, there is a - hopefully small, but unbelievably scary - that they will not resist. The president elect is almost certain to nominate an incompetent, dishonest, or ideological justice, who will be amenable to corrupt deals.
We need to be vigilant from the very beginning, or it may be too late. We cannot let excessive deference to comity permit a takeover of our institutions by those who have no respect for them. The Supreme Court is the best hope of the Republic for the first year. After that, may God help the United States of America.
I admire and support you and your work for your constituents in Massachusetts and for our country, and I take the opportunity to express my gratitude to you and your staff.