Has the campaign against Barrett fizzled out already?

Or has it even really begun yet? Democrats and the media have taken aim at Amy Coney Barrett since the passing of Ruth Bader Ginsburg, correctly guessing that Donald Trump planned to nominate the Seventh Circuit jurist in that eventuality. Despite all of the attacks on Barrett over the past two weeks, nothing has landed, Rich Lowry writes today at National Review, and it looks like Democrats have already emptied the quiver for the Supreme Court nominee.

Why am I suddenly hearing Han Solo’s voice saying, “Don’t get cocky”?

The Supreme Court fight of the century is, so far, a fizzle.

The ratio of progressive outrage over the nomination of federal Judge Amy Coney Barrett to supposed reasons that the U.S. Senate shouldn’t confirm her is completely out of whack — there’s a surfeit of the former and almost none of the latter.

Barrett has received extraordinary testimonials from her colleagues and students, who say she is brilliant, conscientious, and kind. The opposition has countered with a dog’s breakfast of nonsense, including that her confirmation hearing can’t be held in the middle of a pandemic — when the Senate has continued its business since the pandemic began.

True enough — but. Let us also recall where we stood with Brett Kavanaugh at the two-week stage of his nomination. It’s almost as if history is repeating itself, a parallel which seems either eerie or the revelation of a well-used strategy. Within the first fortnight, we had the “Kavanaugh has spoken about his opposition to Roe” arguments, a demand from Democrats for recusals (on Mueller-related matters in this instance), freakouts on the Left for fair media analyses, a supposed personal scandal that wasn’t, and even a Dick Durbin reminder that Senate Democrats couldn’t stop a confirmation if Republicans decided to press forward with it.

Actually, that all took place within the first four days after Kavanaugh’s nomination. By Day 16 (July 25, 2018), The Hill was calling the opposition to Kavanaugh a fizzle, too:

Democrats are struggling to find an opening in their fight to sink Brett Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court nomination.

They can’t block the nominee on their own, but they’re under intense pressure from liberals to wage a full-scale attack against Kavanaugh as they try to sway the one or two Republicans needed to sink President Trump’s pick and score a major victory heading into the midterm elections. …

Still, none of the Democratic attacks have gained much traction with Republicans.

Good times, good times. Two months later, Democrats leaked an unsubstantiated accusation of a teenage assault that even the people cited as witnesses wouldn’t corroborate, and it created an institutional meltdown. The debacle nearly derailed Kavanaugh’s confirmation, and it set new standards for character assassination that we have yet to plumb in Barrett’s nomination.

One lesson learned by the GOP from that crucible: don’t give Democrats enough time to generate smears. Even if the election wasn’t four weeks away, Lindsey Graham and Mitch McConnell would fast-track Barrett just to reduce and hopefully eliminate the amount of time that Senate Democrats have to manufacture smears and slurs. That might be tougher to do against a woman, but it’s not impossible, and Senate Democrats demonstrated their willingness to use any means necessary to control any openings on the Supreme Court in 2018.

That hasn’t changed in the time since, and I doubt that either Graham or McConnell think that Democrats’ attack has ended at all. It seems more likely that they are looking on the horizon for a fully functional Democratic Death Star to take aim at Barrett.