By Michael Tomasky
Mr. Tomasky is editor of Democracy: A Journal of Ideas and a contributing opinion writer. Oct. 5, 2018
The United States Supreme Court.CreditCreditGabriella Demczuk for The New York Times
Test your Supreme Court knowledge: In the entire history of the court, exactly one justice has been
a) nominated by a president who didn’t win the popular vote and
b) confirmed by a majority of senators who collectively won fewer votes in their last election than did the senators who voted against that justice’s confirmation.
Who was it?
If you’re like me, your mind started leapfrogging back to the 19th century. After all, this sounds like one of those oddities that was far more likely to have happened when our democracy was still in formation.
So let’s see … John Quincy Adams lost the popular vote in 1824. Someone he named to the Court? Or Rutherford B. Hayes — lost to Samuel J. Tilden in 1876, then was named president by a rigged commission. Maybe him?”