Supreme Court Justice Anthony M. Kennedy announced today that he’ll retire as of 7.31. The 81 year-old jurist, a conservative moderate who often performed a swing-vote function, is well aware that this decision will allow President Trump an opportunity to fundamentally tilt the Supreme Court in a hard-right, corporate-favoring, Gorsuch-like direction. Thanks, brah…history will remember you for this.

Kennedy presumably understands what an existential threat to democracy Trump is, and that his replacement nominee will almost certainly be a rabid-dog rightie. Kennedy knows, of course, that the considerate thing (as far as the country is concerned) would have been to wait until early ’19, by which time the midterm elections might give liberals a majority in the House and/or Senate. But naahh.

Is Kennedy ill or something? Even if he’s suffering from late-stage cancer he should hang on until the very end. The judicial and legal character of the U.S. of A. hangs in the balance.

Today’s N.Y. Times report states the obvious. “A Trump appointee would very likely create a solid five-member conservative majority that could imperil abortion rights and expand gun rights.”