Middle Tennessee State University Professor John Vile suggested, “Obama might find it to his advantage to nominate a sitting senator in hopes of getting confirmation”.
Fallout from Scalia’s unexpected death overshadowed Obama’s two days of summitry with Southeast Asian leaders.
But the president’s attention was divided. “What the Republicans today are saying is you can’t vote on anything”. Democrats say Obama has every right and a constitutional duty to fill vacancies on the court until he leaves office next January.
Meanwhile, retired Justice Sandra Day O’Connor – a Ronald Reagan appointee who was a Republican politician before she ascended the bench – said unequivocally that Obama should make a nomination. Sri Srinivasan, who sits on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, was confirmed by a vote of 97-0 less than three years ago by the Senate, which also unanimously confirmed Jane Kelly in 2013 to the St. Louis-based Eighth Circuit. “It would be a good thing not to have the type of Armageddon it looks like we’re about to have”.
Obama argued Tuesday that “the Supreme Court’s different”.
“I am amused when I hear people who claim to be strict interpreters of the constitution suddenly reading into it a whole serious of provisions that weren’t there”, he continued.
As Senate Judiciary Committee chairman, Grassley gets to decide whether the Committee holds hearings and whether it is allowed to vote on a Supreme Court nominee.
Wisconsin Republican Ron Johnson, who is facing a tough fight for re-election, had quickly stepped up to back McConnell last weekend, but he then appeared to modify that position Tuesday during an interview with a local radio show. But the party may still be searching for a strategy. “It will hold as far as I’m concerned, until I’m overruled, that we should put it off until after the election”, he said. “In fact sadly, I expect him to make a very political nomination to nominate someone for whom there is a substantial political constituency in the November elections to try to turn it into a partisan issue”, Cruz said.
Obama stopped short of tipping his hand in terms of who he would nominate.
Republicans in the Senate and on the 2016 campaign trail have said they want the next president to nominate Scalia’s replacement. The Constitution has established a process; Obama intends to follow the process; and there’s plenty of time for senators to do their jobs.
Obama skirted around the question of whether he would consider making a recess appointment-an appointment that the President is entitled to make while Congress is out of session-and instead chose to remark on the aggravating state of politics in Washington.
The late Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia a year ago.
In lieu of attending the funeral, the president and first lady Michelle Obama are paying their respects to Scalia and his family on Friday while his body lies in repose in the Great Hall of the Supreme Court.
Smith saw an opportunity for Obama to nominate a judge that is independent and moderate enough for Republicans to accept, yet liberal enough to change the balance of the Court.
The court would be unable to issue rulings on any issue in which the justices split 4-4.