Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham (R-SC) confirmed Monday that Republicans have secured enough votes in the upper chamber to confirm President Donald Trump’s Supreme Court nominee before Election Day, the Washington Examiner reported.
“We’re going to have a process that you’ll be proud of,” a victorious Graham told Fox News host Sean Hannity, according to the Examiner.
“The nominee is going to be supported by every Republican in the Judiciary Committee, and we’ve got the votes to confirm the justice on the floor of the Senate before the election. And that’s what’s coming,” the senator added.
“We’ve got the votes”
Both Graham and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) have pledged to move forward with the nomination of a replacement for the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, despite threats of retaliation from Democrats. Graham has cited the Democrats’ vicious treatment of now-Justice Brett Kavanaugh, who was confirmed after a contentious battle in the Senate in the fall of 2018, as being influential in his decision to fill the seat without delay.
“They tried to destroy Brett Kavanagh so they could fill the seat,” Graham told Hannity on Monday, according to a report from the Associated Press. “It didn’t work with Kavanaugh.”
Graham went on: “We’ve got the votes to confirm Justice Ginsburg’s replacement before the election. We’re going to move forward in the committee. We’re going to report the nomination out of the committee to the floor of the United States Senate so we can vote before the election.”
Every Senate Republican except Alaska’s Lisa Murkowski and Maine’s Susan Collins have pledged to vote on the nominee, giving the GOP the 51 votes necessary if all vote to confirm as expected. Murkowski and Collins have both said the nomination should be delayed until after the election, CNBC notes.
Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) pointed out on ABC’s This Week, however, that Supreme Court justices have been nominated in an election year throughout America’s history.
Cruz said election-year Supreme Court nominations have happened 29 times, as Fox News reported. Of the 19 times when the president and Senate were controlled by the same party, nominees were confirmed 17 times.
Of the 10 times when the president and Senate were not controlled by the same party — as was the case when former President Barack Obama’s nominated Merrick Garland — only two were confirmed.
Trump tees up nomination
President Trump, for his part, has revealed that his nominee will be a woman and will officially be named on Saturday. Federal judges Amy Coney Barrett and Barbara Lagoa are reportedly among top contenders.
“I would say that I’m very close to making it a decision in my own mind and I’m going to reveal it on Saturday,” Trump said Tuesday, according to ABC News.”I’m doing that out of respect for Justice Ginsburg, you’re having a service on Thursday, so I didn’t really want to do anything to cut into the service.”