Judge Merrick Garland may soon be getting his long-awaited revenge on Republicans after it was discovered that he could be a judge hearing Trump’s latest appeal, per The Hill.
Garland attracted national attention when he was nominated for the Supreme Court by former President Barack Obama. The seat had previously belonged to conservative Judge Antonin Scalia, who passed away in February 2016 due to natural causes.
The possibility of a political shift in the nation’s highest court sent shockwaves throughout Washington and turned Garland into a lightning rod of controversy. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell famously refused to hold a hearing on Garland’s hearing until after the 2016 presidential election, claiming that the judicial appointment should be mandated by the people.
Many political pundits believe that part of the reason Trump managed to beat Hillary Clinton was because of this issue, as it rallied socially conservative Evangelical voters who might otherwise have been hesitant to vote for Trump. According to The Washington Post, 26 percent of all Trump voters polled said that the primary basis for their decision was the Supreme Court vacancy.
After winning the election, Trump nominated Justice Neil Gorsuch to take the vacant seat, leading to many on Twitter, such as radio commentator Michelangelo Signorile, claiming that Merrick Garland’s seat had been “stolen.”
Just repeat: Merrick Garland. Stolen Seat. Later.— Michelangelo Signorile (@MSignorile) February 1, 2017
After being denied a spot on the Supreme Court, Garland returned to the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals.
On Monday, U.S. District Judge Amit Mehta rejected Trump’s claim that Congress was not entitled to Trump’s personal and business records with Mazars USA, an accounting firm. The committee, under the chairmanship of Representative Elijah Cummings, had issued a subpoena for the records shortly after Democrats won control of the House in November. Monday’s ruling essentially gives the House Oversight and Reform Committee the right to examine Trump’s dealings.
Trump and his legal team filed an appeal on Tuesday, which will be heard by the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals, of which Merrick is the chief judge.
Appeals are heard by three different judges, and The Hill was careful to note that there is no guarantee that Garland will be on the three person panel. However, Twitter was nonetheless gleeful about the prospect of the jilted judge getting his revenge, and the name “Merrick Garland” soon started trending on the social media platform.
Author and activist Amy Siskind called the situation “karma” in a tweet.
Trump is appealing Judge Mehta's ruling that Mazars USA, his accounting firm, must turn over his financial records to the House Oversight Committee.— Amy Siskind ????️???? (@Amy_Siskind) May 21, 2019
As karma would have it....the appeal will be heard by Merrick Garland.https://t.co/undTLjmjQO
Another activist, Adam Best, relayed his message in meme form in his tweet.
When Republicans thought they had seen the last of Merrick Garland but he heads up the court that's hearing Trump's tax appeal. pic.twitter.com/vcHwKgmLYK— Adam Best (@adamcbest) May 21, 2019
In another tweet, Wired reporter Alex Whitcomb added his own take.
If there is a God, he/she has an excellent sense of humor. https://t.co/lStNFShRBo— Alex Whitcomb (@AlexWhitcomb) May 21, 2019
Garland has served on the nation’s highest federal appeals court since 1997.