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Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton made valid arguments Saturday in convincing President Donald Trump to nominate a successor to the U.S. Supreme Court following the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg on Friday.
“Ruth Bader Ginsburg was confirmed 42 days after she was nominated by President Bill Clinton. @RealDonaldTrump‘s nominee should get the same speedy consideration by the Senate,” Fitton wrote in one tweet.
“COUP KARMA: If the Left can impeach and try to remove a president during an election year, a Supreme Court justice can certainly be appointed during an election year,” he added in a second post, an apparent reference to what many conservatives have described as an ongoing “coup attempt” against Trump to drive him from office via the impeachment, “Ukrainegate,” and the Russian collusion hoax before that.
Ruth Bader Ginsburg was confirmed 42 days after she was nominated by President Bill Clinton. @RealDonaldTrump's nominee should get the same speedy consideration by the Senate.
— Tom Fitton (@TomFitton) September 19, 2020
COUP KARMA: If the Left can impeach and try to remove a president during an election year, a Supreme Court justice can certainly be appointed during an election year.
— Tom Fitton (@TomFitton) September 19, 2020
Ginsburg, 87, died Friday from complications due to metastatic pancreatic cancer. The liberal iconic associate justice, nominated by President Bill Clinton and appointed in 1993, had battled cancer on numerous prior occasions.
“Our Nation has lost a jurist of historic stature,” Chief Justice John G. Roberts, Jr. said in a Friday evening statement. “We at the Supreme Court have lost a cherished colleague. Today we mourn, but with confidence that future generations will remember Ruth Bader Ginsburg as we knew her — a tireless and resolute champion of justice.”
As for Fitton’s arguments, the president appears set to move forward.
“@GOP We were put in this position of power and importance to make decisions for the people who so proudly elected us, the most important of which has long been considered to be the selection of United States Supreme Court Justices. We have this obligation, without delay!” Trump wrote on Twitter Saturday morning.
That said, Democrats have already voiced their opposition to a nomination, much less an appointment, to replace Ginsburg before the November election.
“Mitch McConnell set the precedent. No Supreme Court vacancies filled in an election year. If he violates it, when Democrats control the Senate in the next Congress, we must abolish the filibuster and expand the Supreme Court,” Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass.) threatened in a tweet.
Mitch McConnell set the precedent. No Supreme Court vacancies filled in an election year. If he violates it, when Democrats control the Senate in the next Congress, we must abolish the filibuster and expand the Supreme Court.
— Ed Markey (@EdMarkey) September 19, 2020
“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,” added Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.).
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.
— Chuck Schumer (@SenSchumer) September 18, 2020
McConnell’s “precedent” on nominating Supreme Court justices during an election year has not been to obfuscate for political purposes, as Markey appeared to suggest.
Rather, he has said that when one party controls the Senate but the other party controls the White House, nominees should wait until afterward. That was the case during the final year of President Barack Obama’s second term — when Justice Antonin Scalia passed suddenly and Obama submitted U.S. District Judge Merrick Garland’s name in 2016.
McConnell refused to even give Garland a Judiciary Committee hearing let alone a full Senate confirmation vote, citing his rule. That could change now, however, since Republicans control both the Senate and White House.
For his part, Obama pressed the Senate to submit Garland to the full confirmation process, citing the Constitution.
Just dug up this clip of Obama in 2016:
"When there is a vacancy on the SCOTUS, the President is to nominate someone, the Senate is to consider that nomination… There's no unwritten law that says that it can only be done on off-years. That's not in the Constitution text." pic.twitter.com/vrOi3DrkJN
— Caleb Hull (@CalebJHull) September 19, 2020
“When there is a vacant on the United States Supreme Court, the president is to nominate someone. The Senate is to consider that nomination, and either they disapprove of that nominee or that nominee is elevated to the Supreme Court,” he said in a video clip of him explaining the process at an ASEAN conference.
“Historically, this has not been viewed as a question. There’s no unwritten law that says that it can only be done on off-years. That’s not in the constitutional text,” Obama added.
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