News

Law & the Courts

McConnell Pushes Back on Allegations of SCOTUS Hypocrisy, Cites ‘Overwhelming’ Historical Precedent for Filling Vacancy

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R., Ky.) called for the Senate to vote on a new Supreme Court justice sometime “this year,” and argued that a confirmation hearing could take place before the November elections.

McConnell made his remarks in a speech on the Senate floor on Monday, while Republicans and Democrats gear up for a fight over the nomination that could occur in the midst of election campaigns.

“President Trump’s nominee for a vacancy will receive a vote on the floor of the Senate,” McConnell said.

McConnell also attacked Democrats for “an astonishing parade of misrepresentations” regarding his own position on whether it would be appropriate to nominate a justice so close to the election. In 2016, following the death of conservative justice Antonin Scalia, Senate Republicans refused to hold a confirmation hearing for Obama nominee Merrick Garland.

“The American people should have a voice in the selection of their next Supreme Court justice,” McConnell said in February 2016 shortly after Scalia’s death. “Therefore, this vacancy should not be filled until we have a new president.”

However, McConnell said his current stance is not comparable to his position from 2016. The majority leader pointed out that in 2016, the Senate was held by Republicans while the president was a Democrat. The last time a Supreme Court vacancy occurred in an election year with opposing parties in the Senate and White House was in 1888.

Quoting verbatim his own comments from a February 2016 Senate session, McConnell said, “The Senate has not filled a vacancy arising in an election year when there was a divided government since 1888, almost 130 years ago.”

McConnell further asserted that the Senate would have enough time to confirm a new justice before the November elections if it chose to do so, although he did not explicitly say whether a vote would occur before or after the elections.

Send a tip to the news team at NR.

Zachary Evans is a news writer for National Review Online. He is a veteran of the Israeli Defense Forces and a trained violist.

Most Popular

Politics & Policy

A Bizarre and Revealing Biden Interview

William Voegeli of the Claremont Review of Books brought up a strange Joe Biden interview from 1974 I hadn't seen before in which Biden emerges as arrogant and determined to make more money, one way or another. Biden also speaks of his first wife Neilia, who had died two years earlier, in unusually frank ways: ... Read More
Politics & Policy

A Bizarre and Revealing Biden Interview

William Voegeli of the Claremont Review of Books brought up a strange Joe Biden interview from 1974 I hadn't seen before in which Biden emerges as arrogant and determined to make more money, one way or another. Biden also speaks of his first wife Neilia, who had died two years earlier, in unusually frank ways: ... Read More
Media

The Unseemly Urge to Excuse Jeffrey Toobin

Jeffrey Toobin, legal analyst for CNN and The New Yorker, was suspended from his jobs and subjected to a round of public mockery for visibly exposing himself while masturbating on a Zoom call with New Yorker colleagues. The call was designed to role-play post-election scenarios for a contested election; Toobin ... Read More
Media

The Unseemly Urge to Excuse Jeffrey Toobin

Jeffrey Toobin, legal analyst for CNN and The New Yorker, was suspended from his jobs and subjected to a round of public mockery for visibly exposing himself while masturbating on a Zoom call with New Yorker colleagues. The call was designed to role-play post-election scenarios for a contested election; Toobin ... Read More
Elections

How Trump Should Approach the Final Debate

The so-called mainstream polls of the swing states show the race narrowing. If the trend continues at the current rate, President Trump could poll even in two weeks—in addition to the “other” polls that show him near there already. So Trump’s mission at the final debate on Thursday is to continue to ... Read More
Elections

How Trump Should Approach the Final Debate

The so-called mainstream polls of the swing states show the race narrowing. If the trend continues at the current rate, President Trump could poll even in two weeks—in addition to the “other” polls that show him near there already. So Trump’s mission at the final debate on Thursday is to continue to ... Read More

The Pollster Who Thinks Trump Is Ahead

The polling aggregator on the website RealClearPolitics shows the margin in polls led by Joe Biden in a blue font and the ones led by Donald Trump in red. For a while, the battleground states have tended to be uniformly blue, except for polls conducted by the Trafalgar Group. If you are a firm believer only in ... Read More

The Pollster Who Thinks Trump Is Ahead

The polling aggregator on the website RealClearPolitics shows the margin in polls led by Joe Biden in a blue font and the ones led by Donald Trump in red. For a while, the battleground states have tended to be uniformly blue, except for polls conducted by the Trafalgar Group. If you are a firm believer only in ... Read More