McConnell On SCOTUS Vacancy
Senate Majority Leader discusses Garland nomination, rules out lame-duck confirmation and highlights Senate legislative action on Sunday morning news programs
LOUISVILLE, KY – The following are excerpts from Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s interviews this morning:
FOX News Sunday
I can't imagine that a Republican majority in the United States Senate would want to confirm in a lame duck session a nominee opposed by the National Rifle Association, the National Federation of Independent Business that represents small businesses—that have never taken a position on the Supreme Court appointment before—they're opposed to this guy. I can't imagine that a Republican majority Senate even if it were assumed to be a minority, would want to confirm a judge that would move the court dramatically to the left. That's not going to happen.
Look, Barack Obama calling judge -- this judge a moderate doesn't make him a moderate. This judge would move the court dramatically to the left. He's enthusiastically supported by MoveOn.org.
The Senate has a role to play here. The president nominates, we decide to confirm. We think the important principle in the middle of this presidential year is that the American people need to weigh in and decide who's going to make this decision. Not this lame duck president on the way out the door, but the next president.
NBC Meet the Press
The American people are about to weigh in on who is going to be the president. And that's the person, whoever that may be, who ought to be making this appointment.
… the Senate has been quite active. This year we have another year which we have a great chance of passing every single appropriation bill for the first time since 1994. The Senate is not doing nothing during this election season. But we're not giving lifetime appointments to this president on the way out the door, to change the Supreme Court for the next 25 or 30 years.
ABC This Week
Well, the Senate has been very much at work for the last 15 months. We've passed a lot of legislation that the president has signed and it should – the president's chief of staff knows we're very much at work.
The principle is … the American people are in the middle of choosing who the next president is going to be. And that next president ought to have this appointment, which will affect the Supreme Court, for probably a quarter of a century.
… the last time the American people voted was in 2014 and they elected a Republican Senate. And under the Constitution, we have shared responsibility. This is not something he does alone.
CNN State of the Union
Who ought to make the decision? A lame-duck president on the way out the door, or the president we're in the process of electing right now? … we know what their tradition is. This nomination ought to be made by the president we're in the process of electing this year.
If you want to discuss the nominee just for a minute, even though Barack Obama calls him a moderate, he's opposed by the NRA. He's opposed by the National Federation of Independent Business which has never taken a position on a Supreme Court nominee before. The New York Times said it would move the court dramatically to the left. But this is not about this particular judge—this is about who should make the appointment. We're in the process of picking a president, and that new president ought to make this appointment which will affect the Supreme Court maybe for the next quarter of a century.
Related Issues: Small Business, Supreme Court, Second Amendment