Letters…

Dear Rick Santorum:

How in God’s green earth did you make through your time in the Senate without learning how the Constitution worked? Either you did, and you are dissembling so that the base will like you (although, to be honest, you probably lost beaucoup points with them for even appearing on the Rachel Maddow Show to begin with) or you really DON’T understand basic civics. In either case, you are unfit to be president.

Let me put it this way: you and other conservatives were quick to urge the Supreme Court to invalidate the mandates of the Affordable Care Act in the Hobby Lobby case. But there is no way that the Founders could even have foreseen the issue which faced the court. That did not stop any of you from claiming, successfully, that it fell under the First Amendment’s Free Exercise clause. There is no way any of you would argue that the Supreme Court’s decision in that case should be overridden by Congress, regardless of whether public opinion supported the contraception mandate.

That’s because the Court, not Congress, decides the parameters of the Constitution. The Bill of Rights exists to protect individuals from the majority, or in the case the vocal minority. And quoting a majority opinion in a case the court overruled (Bowers v. Hardwick) and dissents in a cases that went against you (Lawrence v. Texas, Obergfell v. Hodges) to support the point you are making means you know squat. And your vague “We need different judges,” while it no doubt plays to your base, is an empty threat and you know it.

******

Dear Rachel Maddow:

When I first saw who your guest was, I was frankly incredulous. Rick Santorum? Rick Santorum? A man who views your kind as an abomination? The man whose name you Google at your peril? Seriously???

The first part of the interview did little to assuage my disgust. Talking with this man who equated gay sex with sex with dogs calmly and gently about the primaries and the Donald Trump effect seemed like pandering.

But then… you confronted him.  Still in your pleasant “I’m just talking here” way that has endeared you to me from your first show, you got the man to show exactly how ignorant he was.  (Not to mention show how uncomfortable he was being confronted with his past horrible statements. You definitely gave rhetoric teachers across the country a great example of the Appeal to Authority fallacy when he claimed Justice White (who wrote the majority in Bowers) and Justice Scalia (who wrote dissents in Lawrence and Obergfell) as support.

I’m still not entirely happy you had Santorum on, but I guess overall you redeemed yourself.

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