Obama announced in a Rose Garden Address today his nomination of federal Court of Appeals Judge
Merrick Garland to the US Supreme Court in replacement of Associate Justice Antonin Scalia. US Senators Johnny Isakson and David Perdue released statements regarding Obama’s nomination soon after the announcement was made. From Isakson:
“As U.S. senators, we have the Constitutional obligation of advice and consent to the president’s nominations. I take this role very seriously because an appointment to the Supreme Court has a significant and lasting impact on the future of the Court and on our nation. The Constitution gives the responsibility of Supreme Court appointments to two branches of government, not just one. As a senator who has the duty of advice and consent, I believe the American people should have a voice in this process by allowing the next president to select and the next Senate to confirm Justice Scalia’s replacement.”
Isakson also stated that he agreed with Vice President Biden’s stance when he was chairman of the Senate Judiciary
Committee. Biden had previously said it is only fair that “action on a Supreme Court nomination be put off until after the election campaign is over”.
Perdue, a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, stands by his decision that he and other Republican members of the Committee told Majority Leader McConnell in February. He released this statement today:
“The Constitution is clear: the President shall nominate judges to the Supreme Court, but the power to grant, or withhold, consent of such nominees rests exclusively with the United States Senate. What’s at stake here is the balance of our nation’s highest court and the direction of our country for decades. I remain firm in my decision to exercise my Constitutional authority and withhold consent on any nominee to the Supreme Court submitted by President Obama.”
Nominee Merrick Garland is the chief judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit. He has been serving there since 1997.