April 22, 2022 6:00am

April Power Poll: It's about justice ... and time

Your Power Poll coordinator had hoped that the April survey would focus on some of the key measures that passed the Kentucky General Assembly this year, but the deadline came before the veto session ended. If you’re lucky (?) we’ll come back to those in May.

Photo of Keith L. Runyon
Louisville, KY Correspondent
 

Your Power Poll coordinator had hoped that the April survey would focus on some of the key measures that passed the Kentucky General Assembly this year, but the deadline came before the veto session ended. If you’re lucky (?) we’ll come back to those in May.

Meanwhile, let’s take a closer look at the U.S. Supreme Court, to which the first Black female nominee was confirmed, barely, following a contentious hearing by the Senate Judiciary Committee. The historic vote, which occurred April 7, was 53-47; only three Republicans (Sen. Mitt Romney of Utah, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, and Susan Collins of Maine) supported Ketanji Brown Jackson’s confirmation. All of the Senate’s Democrats (including two independents) supported her. The rest of the Republicans, including both of Kentucky’s senators, would have given her the boot.

Louisville’s Power Poll respondents, by a 60% vote, favor changing the way that the Senate exercises its power of “advise and consent” when it comes to the Supreme Court. It isn’t as if this is the first ugly confirmation battle that has broken down along partisan lines in recent years. The last two during former President Donald Trump’s term—Brett Kavanaugh and Amy Comey Barrett—were ugly food fights. In earlier times, the confirmation hearings for two other Republican nominees, Robert Bork and Clarence Thomas, were unpleasant too; Bork was the only justice nominee in the last half-century to be rejected.

Sixty percent of our group favor changes. Twenty-nine percent would leave things as they are, and 11 percent are unsure. Those answers dovetail with responses to the next question which asked about other reforms for the High Court, including term limits and expanding the number of justices. Some 56% of respondents say, yes, something in the way of reform is needed for the Court. Nobody offered any suggestions or comments about this, so we aren’t sure what exactly you have in mind. A full 40% would leave the Court the way it is … no changes. And a mere 5% are unsure.

It’s time for our final question, and since I’m writing this at almost 7 p.m. and the sun’s still out, you know that we now are observing Daylight Savings Time. Seems like every year there is a debate about whether setting our clocks forward one hour in the spring, and back one hour in the fall is a good thing. Medical researchers offer pro’s and con’s for changing the time seasonally, or leaving it the same all year round. And research also shows plenty of reasons why Daylight Time isn’t good for health; ditto Standard Time.

Guess what! We cannot offer clearcut advice about the situation here in Louisville. Our poll was dead even on the subject: 40% want year-round Daylight time and 40% want year-round Standard time. Some 24% like the current system of seasonal change. And 16% don’t care one way or another. The fact is that geographically, Louisville is at the far western edge of the Eastern zone, and we’re only there (instead of in the Central time zone – like Chicago, St. Louis, Nashville and Kansas City) because General Electric requested the change in the 1950s when they opened Appliance Park so clocks here would be on the same time as those in New York City.

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