Below is an excerpt from Glenn Loury's conversation with Freddie Sayers.
Joe Biden has pre-announced that his nominee for the Supreme Court will be a black woman. What do you think about this?
I think it is strange. I think no one needs to be apologetic about reacting to that announcement with a bemusement and kind of quizzical ‘what?’ This comes out of Joe Biden’s political ambition, and the character of American politics. During the South Carolina primary when Biden was uncertain of prevailing in the contest for the nomination of the Democratic Party, in 2020, he wanted to appeal to the black vote and so he made this announcement. He announced that his vice presidential selection would be a woman and that his first appointment to the Supreme Court, should he be fortunate enough to have one, would be a black woman.
You could call this craven pandering. I’m bemused by it because it unnecessarily raises questions about the fitness of whomever he might appoint, when he might have simply chosen a black woman as his nominee, and crowed about it after the fact. To avoid casting any doubt over the choice that he would have made, he could have said this is the best, most qualified person that I could find. But in any case, as he’s done it now, he’s limited his range of options to a very small percentage of the total population of people who might have been selected, and, you could say, has put an asterisk by the name of whomever it is that he might ultimately select.
Glenn C. Loury is the Merton P. Stoltz Professor of the Social Sciences and Professor of Economics at Brown University and a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute.
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