BY ALEXANDRA PETRI
I don’t know why you would want a condensed transcript of the Kavanaugh announcement, as it was pretty short, but you are a busy gentlewoman and you make your own rules, sir. So here it is!
East Room of the White House, PRIME TIME, Because We Have All Tacitly Agreed to Let the President Be the News Whenever He Wants, But Confusing Some “Bachelorette” Viewers, Monday Night.
President Trump: My fellow Americans, I am here doing the second-most important thing a president can do: announcing my pick for the Supreme Court of the United States. The most important thing is to meet with an autocrat and make a lot of concessions for no particular reason, which I will be doing next week. But today we are doing the court thing.
The Supreme Court is basically the Mar-a-Lago or the Ivanka of our republic; it is the crown jewel, compared to which everything else is garbage, and I surround it with words and money in ways that make a lot of Americans uncomfortable. Its job is to protect the Constitution, a document I have definitely read and know about.
Justice Anthony Kennedy told me that he was, for some reason, retiring from the Supreme Court, a job where you literally sit around all day in a robe judging people. I don’t know what he thinks he will do during his retirement. So I have found a replacement who is just like Neil Gorsuch, whom I chose because I was told he had been crafted in a lab designed expressly to produce clones of Antonin Scalia. Or, as it is more commonly known, Georgetown Preparatory School. I have not asked him about his opinions on anything, but I read a thing that implied he didn’t think the sitting president should be prosecuted, which I thought was very sweet and lovely. I can think of no one more qualified for this position.
(A crack appears beneath the podium and the agonized wail of Merrick Garland, chained many feet below the earth, echoes in the room.)
Trump: I hope that the Senate will instantly recognize the wisdom of this pick, or, as is more likely, will pretend that they are going to object in a principled way and then cave at the last minute. Anyway, here is Brett Kavanaugh to reassure you all with his jurisprudence and family.
Kavanaugh: Wow. Thanks. I have been honored to witness your respect for the rule of law and the independent judiciary.
(All the light fixtures in the room begin to shake, but Kavanaugh ignores it.)
No president has ever searched more widely through recommended nominees from the Federalist Society or talked to more people on a list of recommended nominees from the Federalist Society than this one! It was only after an exhaustive search throughout the land for someone fit to serve in this high capacity — or maybe just a single conversation with Justice Kennedy? Who knows! — that I was chosen.
I am an only child. For anyone worrying that I might abridge women’s rights, let me stress that growing up, my favorite mother was a woman. I went to a Jesuit high school whose motto was “Men for others,” and I have tried to embody that creed: For instance, right now, when others could have been appointed to the Supreme Court, I was one of the men appointed instead. My jurisprudence has embodied the same spirit of “men for others”: ruling for others, determining whether others can get abortions, all those great things.
Let me be crystal clear. I know us male Supreme Court justices get a bad rep, and people think we literally do not know what women are — some sort of matryoshka doll that talks? A dangerous envelope full of spawn? Something that you can sometimes find in a big pond that is useful as a source of magical swords and babies? — but I do. I have met Justice Elena Kagan. That’s one! And my mother. Two! I have hired several entire women as clerks. And also I have seen many women in the wild through my binoculars as they flap each morning from their nests to the great bay where they all go each year to lay eggs. My point is, don’t worry: I understand women. Both of my daughters are female, and one of them even enjoys talking!
(This is a laugh line, apparently.)
I have coached my daughters in sports, and we, together, witnessed a women’s basketball team win a victory! Is this reassuring? I bet you are reassured now. Good, I will stop talking.
Oh, wait, duh! My wife. My wife is a woman. She was a great source of strength during … 9/11.
(Rudy Giuliani sighs at his television and downs a shot.)
And my handmaiden is a wo —
My nothing. I mean. Nothing.
In conclusion, my only hobbies are having female family members and interpreting statutes as written. Sometimes Justice Scalia comes to me in a dream and we play chess.
I look forward to promising every senator that I love the Constitution. Like the president, I believe in an independent judiciary. I look forward to preserving the Constitution and keeping an open mind in every case. As open as the canopy-like wings of a woman, a thing I definitely know about.
Alexandra Petri is a columnist for the Washington Post Writers Group. Follow her @petridishes.