Senate Republicans admitted that they are blocking President Obama’s Supreme Court nominee as an election tactic. Some Senators admit that they will confirm Obama’s Supreme Court pick during the lame duck session if they lose the presidential election in November.
Some Republicans acknowledged they could move Garland’s nomination during the lame-duck session, should their party lose both the White House and control of the Senate this fall.
Arizona Sen. Jeff Flake, a Republican on the Judiciary Committee who is generally deferential on presidential nominees, said “yes” when asked whether he would move to confirm Garland in the lame-duck session if Hillary Clinton, the front-runner for the Democratic nomination, wins in November.
“For those of us who are concerned about the direction of the court and wanting at least a more centrist figure than between him and somebody that President Clinton might nominate, I think the choice is clear — in a lame duck,” Flake said Wednesday after Obama named Garland.
The fact that Senate Republicans would leave a seat on the Supreme Court empty in an attempt to win an election should surprise no one who has been paying attention for the past seven plus years. All of the arguments that the right is making about precedence and the “Biden rule” are nothing more than nonsense distractions.
If Republicans lose the presidential election and control of the Senate, they will try to rush through the confirmation of President Obama’s centrist nominee, because they won’t want Hillary Clinton to appoint a more liberal justice. This cynical ignorance of the Senate’s constitutional duties is one of the main reasons why Republicans deserve to lose their majority.
Mitch McConnell’s Senate Republicans are displaying the same disinterest in governing that was on display for years while McConnell obstructed every major Obama proposal and piece of Democratic legislation. For McConnell, everything is about keeping control of the Senate. Once Republicans have been defeated, Republicans will try to cave and confirm Merrick Garland nomination to the Supreme Court.
Mr. Easley is the founder/managing editor and Senior White House and Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association