Sen. Collins favors hearings on Supreme Court nominee

“I think the obligation of the Senate is to carefully consider any nominee whom the president submits”, Collins said, in a press briefing, the Hill said.

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In the clip of the 1992 floor speech, Biden, who was then chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee during what turned out to be the previous year of George H.W. Bush’s presidency, urges the president to, in the event of a Supreme Court vacancy, “not name a nominee until after the November election is completed”.

“That’s exactly what the Republican leader is doing: Delay, delay, delay”, Reid said.

Confirmation hearings for a Supreme Court nominee are the most high-profile in the Senate, and any session is certain to be a spectacle.

And rather than get into a nomination fight during an election year, the Senate ought to wait for the next president to fill the seat vacated when Scalia died February 13. In exchange, all the Republican senators running for re-election this fall will not vote for the rest of their term, either in committee or on the Senate floor. It says appointments shall be made with the advice and consent of the Senate. Biden said President Bush shouldn’t nominate anyone to the Supreme Court until after the presidential election. Yet it’s unusual for the Senate to wage titanic struggles over the selections, or take no action at all.

Biden’s words, though uttered long ago, are a direct contradiction to President Barack Obama’s position in the battle about naming a successor to Justice Antonin Scalia.

Republican Senator Orrin Hatch of Utah said on Monday it was up to McConnell and Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley to decide whether to hold confirmation hearings.

“It would be our pragmatic conclusion that once the political season is underway – and it is – action on a Supreme Court nomination must be put off until after the election campaign is over”, Biden, then a DE senator, said in June of 1992. GOP senators will gather on Tuesday for the first time since Scalia’s death to discuss their path forward.

In remarks Tuesday at Georgetown University law school, Justice Samuel Alito sounded unfazed about possibly spending the rest of this year in a court whose members are locked in a 4-4 tie.

But on Monday, Collins spoke more forcefully, telling CNN she would welcome a nominee from Obama.

But Kirk’s stance gave an indication of some of the challenges McConnell faces as they prepare for a showdown with the White House over filling the vacancy left on the Supreme Court by Antonin Scalia. “No hearing, no vote”, Judiciary Committee member Lindsey Graham told reporters after leaving a private meeting of the panel’s Republicans with McConnell.

The US Senate will block a vote on any Supreme Court nominee from President Barack Obama, the Republican Majority Leader in the chamber has warned.

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Conversely, Senate Republicans have said that if it looks like the White House may stay in Democratic hands, they could rally conservatives. With the USA presidential election looming on November 8, Republicans are aiming to allow the next president to fill Scalia’s vacancy, hoping that a Republican will be elected.

Fulfill Justice Scalia's legacy by appointing his replacement