Senate Majority Leader [crscore]Mitch McConnell[/crscore] said Wednesday he won’t consider President Barack Obama’s Supreme Court nominee, Merrick Garland, much to the dismay of Democrats.
The commander in chief announced his pick to replace conservative Justice Antonin Scalia – who died in February at the age of 79 – Wednesday morning.
Top Republicans in the upper chamber have argued a replacement should not be chosen until there is a new president, saying the American people deserve to have a say in the political direction the Supreme Court takes.
“As Chairman Grassley and I declared weeks ago, and reiterated personally to President Obama, the Senate will continue to observe the Biden Rule so that the American people have a voice in this momentous decision,” McConnell said on the Senate floor. “The American people may well elect a President who decides to nominate Judge Garland for Senate consideration. The next may also nominate someone very different. Either way, our view is this: Give the people a voice in the filling of this vacancy.”
Democrats have slammed the decision – despite their call to block former President George W. Bush’s nominees during his tenure – saying it’s their duty to hold a hearing.
GOP lawmakers in the lower chamber have expressed their support of Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley and McConnell’s decision.
“This has never been about who the nominee is. It is about a basic principle. Under our Constitution, the president has every right to make this nomination, and the Senate has every right not to confirm a nominee,” House Speaker [crscore]Paul Ryan[/crscore] said in a statement. “I fully support Leader McConnell and Chairman Grassley’s decision not to move forward with the confirmation process. We should let the American people decide the direction of the court.”
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