Republican presidential contenders and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell argued for the Senate to run out the clock on President Barack Obama, depriving him the chance to fill the Supreme Court vacancy left by Justice Antonin Scalia’s death today.
Justice Scalia passed away today at age 79.
Far left President Barack Obama will want the Republican Senate to confirm an appointment this year but this hasn’t happened since 1880.
There hasn’t been a justice nominated and confirmed in an election year by divided government since 1880.
Josh Blackman reported:
Since the Civil War, there have been eleven nominations to the Supreme Court in a presidential election year. Of those nine were confirmed, one withdrawn, and one was not acted upon. However, of the nine that were confirmed, eight were with a unified government–that is the President and the Senate were of the same party. Only Justice William Burnham Woods, nominated by Rutherford B. Hayes (a Republican) was confirmed by a Democratic Senate in 1880. All other Justices who were nominated in election year were confirmed by Senates that were of the same party as the President.
Justice Anthony Kennedy was confirmed in 1988 during an election year but was nominated in 1987.
UPDATE: Senator Chuck Grassley released a similar statement today.
Here's Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley saying no to a replacement for Scalia until after the election pic.twitter.com/L1TyslLFKu
— Sabrina Siddiqui (@SabrinaSiddiqui) February 14, 2016