Mass. U.S. Senators Urge Republicans To Consider Obama Court Nominee

In light of Republican senators' pledge not to consider President Obama's nominee for the U.S. Supreme Court, Massachusetts' two U.S. senators are pushing for their GOP colleagues to reconsider.

Democratic Sen. Elizabeth Warren praised Obama's nominee, Merrick Garland, for his work as a federal prosecutor, a senior official at the Department of Justice and a judge on the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals.

Warren insisted the Senate consider the nomination.

"The confirmation of a Supreme Court Justice is one of the most solemn tasks that our government performs," she said in a statement. "President Obama has done his job — selecting a nominee and sending that nominee to the Senate — and it's time for the Senate to do its job."

Soon after Obama announced his pick on Wednesday, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell reiterated his promise that the Senate would not confirm a nominee during an election year.

Sen. Ed Markey, also a Democrat, argued that there is no "magic asterisk" in the Constitution that would prevent a president from nominating a justice during this period.

"Senate Republicans' promise to block consideration of this nominee now leaves us with two vacancies, one on the Supreme Court and the other in their judgment and respect for the Constitution," he said in a statement.

Massachusetts' Republican Gov. Charlie Baker broke ranks with Senate GOP leadership and told The Associated Press that the Senate has a duty to act.

"The president has a duty to make a nomination, and the Senate has a duty to act on that, and I would hope they would," Baker said.


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Amy Gorel Senior Editor
Amy Gorel is a senior editor of digital news at WBUR.



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