If there ever was a Republican-in-name-only, it’s Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan. The GOP governor from a predominantly blue state went on the attack on Wednesday, suggesting that it would be “a mistake” for President Donald Trump to pick a replacement for the late Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg before November’s election.
“We should not be playing partisan games with the Supreme Court,” Hogan said in a tweet Wednesday morning, according to Fox News. “It would be a mistake for the Senate to ram through a nominee on a partisan line vote, just as it would be a tragic mistake to question the integrity of the court or even pack the court.”
“A dignified process”
Trump, for his part, has made clear that he intends to name a nominee this week. Fox has reported that the president’s choice could come as soon as Friday.
It’s good news for Republicans in the Senate, who want to clinch another spot on the Supreme Court bench for conservatives. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) has already said the upper chamber will work to confirm Trump’s pick.
“President Trump’s nominee will receive a vote on the floor of the United States Senate,” McConnell said in a statement shortly after Ginsburg’s death last Friday.
But not everyone is on board.
“We can’t let [Ginsburg’s] death create more division in our country,” Hogan said this week, according to a Texas Tribune report cited by Fox. “I think there’s just more than enough hypocrisy to go around on both sides… The American people deserve a dignified process.”
“We’ve got the votes”
According to Fox, Hogan isn’t the only Republican governor to come out against naming a replacement for Ginsburg before Americans go to the polls; Vermont Gov. Phil Scott and Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker, both from blue states, have expressed similar sentiments.
Back on Capitol Hill, however, Republicans think they have the votes to pull off a victory for Trump.
“The nominee is going to be supported by every Republican in the [Senate] Judiciary Committee, and we’ve got the votes to confirm the justice on the floor of the Senate before the election,” Judiciary panel Chairman Lindsey Graham (R-SC) said Monday, according to the Washington Examiner. “And that’s what’s coming.”
Trump even has anti-Trumper Mitt Romney, a GOP senator from Utah, on his side, as Politico notes. The only Republicans in the Senate to express their opposition publicly are Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski and Maine Sen. Susan Collins, both of whom rose to fame during the contentious fall 2018 confirmation battle over now-Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh.
“Given the proximity of the presidential election…I do not believe that the Senate should vote on the nominee prior to the election,” Collins said in a statement Saturday. “In fairness to the American people, who will either be re-electing the President or selecting a new one, the decision on a lifetime appointment to the Supreme Court should be made by the President who is elected on November 3rd.”