In what has quickly become a consensus among Republicans, Mitch McConnell released a statement on Saturday asserting that Barack Obama should not get to select the next Supreme Court Justice because “the American people should have a voice.”
Barack Obama was elected president in 2008 and re-elected to another 4 year term in 2012. His term does not expire until January 2017.
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell made the following statement Saturday on the passing of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia:
“Today our country lost an unwavering champion of a timeless document that unites each of us as Americans. Justice Scalia’s fidelity to the Constitution was rivaled only by the love of his family: his wife Maureen his nine children, and his many grandchildren. Through the sheer force of his intellect and his legendary wit, this giant of American jurisprudence almost singlehandedly revived an approach to constitutional interpretation that prioritized the text and original meaning of the Constitution. Elaine and I send our deepest condolences to the entire Scalia family.
“The American people should have a voice in the selection of their next Supreme Court Justice. Therefore, this vacancy should not be filled until we have a new President.”
Seventeen Supreme Court justices have been confirmed by the United States Senate during a presidential election year. The last was Anthony Kennedy, who was confirmed during the last year of Ronald Reagan’s presidency.
Mitch McConnell was last reelected with 806,787 votes. Barack Obama was reelected with 65,915,796 votes.
“I plan to fulfill my Constitutional responsibilities to name a successor,” Obama said in an address to the nation Saturday night. “There’s plenty of time…for the Senate to fulfill its responsibility to give that person a fair hearing and a timely vote.”