CNN anchor John Berman made an ancient historical reference on Thursday’s “New Day,” saying the Republican Supreme Court strategy over the years had been nothing short of Thucydidean, the Athenian historian and general.
“A glaring political lesson as true today as it was 2,500 years ago when the Greek historian Thucydides first wrote it,” said Berman as dramatic background music played behind him. “The strong do as they will, and the weak suffer as they must.”
He immediately repeated the line from Thucydides to make sure everyone was aware of his fluency with the historian’s thoughts on the Peloponnesian War.
“Droppin’ knowledge,” said a faint voice off-camera.
The line from Berman referred to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s strategy of both denying Judge Merrick Garland a vote when President Obama nominated him to the Supreme Court in 2016 and his intention now to ram through a nominee to replace Justice Anthony Kennedy, who announced Wednesday that he would retire from the bench after 30 years on the bench.
The decision continued to ripple throughout D.C. and beyond on Thursday. Kennedy has been the deciding vote on a number of critical 5-4 decisions in both directions, but most famously for issues surrounding LGBT rights and abortion.
On Wednesday, CNN legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin said that abortion would be criminalized in up to 20 states within 18 months. MSNBC hosts — led by Chris Matthews — called on Senate Democrats to block any nominee Trump put forward by any means necessary.