Feathered Bastard

Janet Napolitano as Supreme Court Justice? Puh-leeeeeze

Literally, it's the most inane piece of twaddle I've read since the days when erstwhile pop star Jewel penned poetry. I'm talkin' about O.J. Simpson-expert and CNN talking head Jeffrey Toobin's suggestion in a post for The New Yorker online that ex-Arizona guv and DHS honch-ess Janet Napolitano would be a gee-whiz-swell replacement for U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. That's assuming the ailing septuagenarian Supreme croaks from the pancreatic cancer she's now hospitalized for.

Writes Toobin: "Janet Napolitano, the former governor, attorney general, and U.S. Attorney of Arizona, and the recently installed Secretary of Homeland Security, would seem to have the ideal background if Obama decides to go the non-judge route. (And in private practice, Napolitano helped represent Anita Hill--which might make for lively lunchtime conversation with Clarence Thomas.)"

Despite these retarded remarks, Toobin's no dunce when it comes to the Supreme Court. In fact, his most recently published tome is The Nine: Inside the Secret World of the Supreme Court. But he apparently is not as well versed in the Napster's political history as we are here in Sand Land. If Toobin knew anything about Nappy, he'd know she's a gutless, careerist cipher, who left Arizona with a billion dollar deficit, a rock-bottom ranking in education, and a legacy of hate and intolerance spearheaded by nativist pols such as state Senator Russell Pearce and Sheriff Joe Arpaio, whom she never really took on during her six year tenure.

In fact, since Toobin needs schoolin' on Nappy's many negatives, I'd suggest he study Village Voice Media Executive Editor Mike Lacey's November cover story, Janet Napolitano's Sorry Service in Arizona Makes Her a Terrible Choice for Homeland Security Secretary. See, that "sorry service" also argues against any appointment higher than the one Nappy has now.

This speculation on the Napster's suitability for filling out a black robe seems particularly premature considering that she's just taken the helm at DHS, and has yet to prove that she can do the job. In fact, the New York Times' editorial board recently criticized Napolitano regarding her thuggish political ally Sheriff Joe, and urged her to rein him in on his 287(g) authority. 

Toobin does mention other possibilities to replace Ginsburg, such as Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm and federal appeals court Judge Sonia Sotomayor. But he gives the skunk-coifed Nappy practically a whole paragraph in his online musing. I guess now Nappy owes him lunch, or something.

I will say one thing, if Nappy were to ascend to highest court in the land, it would be historic. In Arizona, she was, and is, widely assumed to be a closeted lesbian. (She has denied being so in the past, and has been no pal to gay rights in this state.) Still, if she is gay, she'd be the first ever alt-lifestyle lady appointed to the court. Um, that we know of, anyway.

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Stephen is a former staff writer and columnist at Phoenix New Times.
Contact: Stephen Lemons