It seems to be rather fitting that impulsive tweeter Donald Trump would pick a guy officially named the “Tweeter Laureate of Texas” as one of his potential U.S. Supreme Court nominees, should he be elected president.
That guy is Texas Supreme Court Justice Don Willett, a respected conservative judge in Texas legal circles and also a pretty prolific tweeter on the national level. The New York Times and Law360 have both written articles specifically about how good Willett is at tweeting — about his kids, about Blue Bell ice cream, about Baylor football, quirky court cases, Star Wars jokes and, oh, yeah, stupid shit that Donald Trump says.
Trump does not appear to follow Willett on Twitter, so it is unclear if Trump is even aware that Willett has cleverly mocked him at least a dozen times in the past year (see a sample of tweets at bottom of post). Most notably, Willett said last summer that the thought of Donald Trump considering SCOTUS nominees makes him cry — in a 140-character haiku. Funny how things work out, no?
Willett has made fun of Trump's efforts to appeal to evangelicals by quoting him as saying he will be "the best thing that's ever happened to them." He has compared the idea of Donald Trump forcing Mexico to pay for a giant wall to “Darth Trump” planning to rebuild the Death Star and make the Rebels pay for it. And when Trump once curiously talked about Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito “signing a bill” at a CNN debate, Willett tweeted out a separation of powers diagram that looks as if it came out of a fourth-grade history textbook, assuring his 38,000 followers that he is 100 percent sure that he has never once signed legislation.
According to the Dallas Morning News, Willett said at Governor Greg Abbott's book-signing event that he wouldn't comment about being on Trump's shortlist, saying he was “exercising judicial restraint.” He is one of 11 people Trump named.
Voters have twice elected Willett to the Texas Supreme Court bench since he was first appointed by former governor Rick Perry in 2005 (in fact, he told The Atlantic once that he was entirely against judicial elections). Though he has a rather public persona and a loud online presence, Willett told the Times in 2014 that he stays away from partisan political commentary or legal issues while tweeting.
Judging from his recent tweets, however, it's apparent how he feels about this year's presidential election. On Monday he tweeted a gif of Miss Piggy shaking her head about it, and said earlier this month he would like to skip the next six months of presidential politics by submerging himself in what appears to be a river full of toxic waste. Unfortunately, though, looks like he just got involuntarily dragged into the circus.
Check out all his Donald Trump and palm-to-forehead 2016 election tweets below:
"We'll rebuild the Death Star. It'll be amazing, believe me. And the rebels will pay for it."— Justice Don Willett (@JusticeWillett) April 8, 2016
—Darth Trump pic.twitter.com/y25LADg15J
Trump to "the evangelicals"—— Justice Don Willett (@JusticeWillett) March 9, 2016
"I'll be the best thing that's ever happened to them."
ps—Happy Easter, everyone! pic.twitter.com/a1mGbY8a9p
Uber, but for skipping the next six months of presidential politics. pic.twitter.com/fzLezjegyu— Justice Don Willett (@JusticeWillett) May 4, 2016
"With malice toward none, with charity for all . . . except for all the losers, clowns, and dummies."— Justice Don Willett (@JusticeWillett) August 7, 2015
—President Donald Lincoln
Can't wait till Trump rips off his face Mission Impossible-style & reveals a laughing Ruth Bader Ginsburg. pic.twitter.com/LieabD35zb— Justice Don Willett (@JusticeWillett) August 27, 2015
I'm 100% certain than in my 10+ years as a Supreme Court Justice, I've never once signed a bill. pic.twitter.com/H1o5XVcRLi— Justice Don Willett (@JusticeWillett) February 26, 2016
Keep the Houston Press Free... Since we started the Houston Press, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Houston, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Houston with no paywalls.