Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said in the event that Republicans take back control of the Senate, it would be “highly unlikely” that a Supreme Court nominee picked by President Joe Biden would be confirmed in 2024.
“I think in the middle of a presidential election, if you have a Senate of the opposite party of the president, you have to go back to the 1880s to find the last time a vacancy was filled,” McConnell said. “So I think it’s highly unlikely. In fact, no, I don’t think either party if it controlled, if it were different from the president, would confirm a Supreme Court nominee in the middle of an election.” Speaking on Justice Amy Coney Barrett’s confirmation to replace the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, he said “What was different in 2020 was we were of the same party as the president,” the Kentucky Republican said
The comments from the top Senate Republican are likely to trigger the ire of Democrats who have been intensely critical of McConnell’s handling of the Supreme Court confirmation process in the past and have accused Republicans of obstruction and hypocrisy over the issue. McConnell famously said “One of my proudest moments was when I looked Barack Obama in the eye, and I said, ‘Mr. President, you will not fill the Supreme Court vacancy,” McConnell said in a speech at an August 2016 event in his home state of Kentucky.
Host Hewitt went on to ask what McConnell would do if a justice stepped down in 2023, over a year before the election, and Biden sent a nominee to a hypothetically Republican-controlled Senate — citing the precedent of Anthony Kennedy, who was nominated by Reagan in 1987, but confirmed by a Democratic Senate. “Well, we’d have to wait and see what happens,” McConnell said.
ARTICLE: PAUL MURDOCH
MANAGING EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE
PHOTO CREDITS: YAHOO NEWS
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