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Mitch McConnell Says People 'Need To Leave The Supreme Court Alone'—And Everyone Had The Same Response

After Mitch McConnell called on everyone to 'leave the Supreme Court alone,' people slammed him for helping create the current Court in the first place.

Screenshot of Mitch McConnell

After news outlets reported that an upside-down flag flew at the home of Justice Samuel Alito shortly after the Capitol riot, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell was accused of hypocrisy after urging people to "leave the Supreme Court alone," suggesting criticisms and protests are undermining the integrity of the institution.

The upside-down flag, a symbol associated with Trump's "Stop the Steal" movement protesting President Joe Biden’s 2020 election victory, was put up by Alito’s wife following the attack on Congress, due to a dispute with a neighbor.

The news prompted Democrats in both chambers of Congress to call on Alito to recuse himself from cases related to the insurrection including former President Donald Trump's claim of legal immunity from charges that he sought to overturn the election results.

But McConnell dismissed these concerns, issuing the following response to a reporter who asked him if Alito should recuse himself:

“It seems to me there are nonstop attacks on the Supreme Court, week after week after week, so I’m not going to dignify that with a response."
“We need to leave the Supreme Court alone, protect them from people who went into their neighborhoods and tried to do them harm, look out for the Supreme Court — that’s part of the job of the administration."

You can hear what McConnell said in the video below.

There are a lot of things wrong with McConnell's statement given he bears much of the responsibility for the current state of the Supreme Court.

The relationship between Trump and McConnell has been largely strained since McConnell acknowledged Biden as the winner of the 2020 election even as Trump mounted a failed campaign to overturn the election results that culminated in the insurrection. But prior to that, they were certainly allied in the project to remake the Supreme Court in their image by any means necessary.

During Trump's term, in his capacity as then-Senate Majority Leader, McConnell rammed through Trump's Supreme Court appointments, even keeping former Justice Antonin Scalia's seat open for more than a year, depriving President Obama from having hearings on his nominee to fill the seat, now Attorney General Merrick Garland.

At the time, the then-majority leader refused to hold confirmation hearings for Garland, arguing that the pick should not be considered during an election year. Accusations that his decision was informed, at least in part, by racial animus toward then-President Barack Obama have dogged him ever since.

However, McConnell reversed course once Trump won the 2016 presidential election, ultimately seating Justices Neil Gorsuch, Brett Kavanaugh, and Amy Coney Barrett, securing a conservative majority on the court.

Justice Barrett was famously nominated mere days prior to the 2020 election, and McConnell had no qualms about holding confirmation hearings for her, completely reversing his own made-up rule to justify holding up Garland's nomination.

These facts were not lost on McConnell's critics—who all had the same response.

Last month, McConnell broke with Trump's claim over absolute presidential immunity but was criticized by people who were unimpressed with his remarks considering his history.

In an interview with Meet the Press moderator Kristen Welker, McConnell said presidents should not be immune from criminal prosecutions for actions taken while in office. However, McConnell noted that it's ultimately up to the Supreme Court to determine if federal authorities can charge him over his attempts to overturn the 2020 election result.

McConnell said "it’s not up to me to make that decision," adding that "the president clearly needs some kind of immunity, or he’d be in court all the time."

When questioned about his remark in 2021 that "Trump "is still liable for everything he did while he was in office" and that "former presidents are not immune from being [held] accountable by either" the criminal justice system or civil litigation, he said "that is still my view" but nonetheless stressed that "the court is going to decide."