Isakson and Perdue React to Obama’s Supreme Court Nomination

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.

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LTWill
LTWill

This is easy stance for these two because their seats aren’t in serious danger. Blue and Purple state Republican candidates are going to be bludgeoned by the prospect of Trump selecting a Justice.

Ellynn
Ellynn

Example, Sen. Ron Johnson (W) is up against the man he beat in 2010 Sen. Feingold. In 2001 Feingold was the only democrat who voted for Sen. Ashcraft in committee for AG. When asked why, he pointed out (paraphrasing here) there was nothing technically preventing him from being the AG, a President has a right to appoint who he wishes, and Ashcroft deserved to have a senate vote. Bet that makes a campaign ad.

gcp
gcp

AG and SCOTUS are quite different. SCOTUS is a lifelong position.

Ellynn
Ellynn

I’m aware they are two different positions. Sen. Johnson is going to have to come up with a brilliant reason for not wanting to have a up or down vote on a presidential appointment, or he’s going to loss his senate seat. That’s my point.

LTWill
LTWill

The same thing is going to happen to Kirk in Illinois, Portman in Ohio, Ayotte in New Hampshire. Add those three to the Ron Johnson and the Dems have their Senate majority with a Clinton win.

blakeage80
blakeage80

a simple “LOL” would have sufficed.

Will Durant
Will Durant

If Hillary is elected they will both be confirming him in the lame duck session. This will be too late to help any purple state Senators and it is too early to tell about coattails off of pantsuits.

gcp
gcp

Garland clerked for Brennan. He upholds EPA rules and is questionable on gun control. His decisions on SCOTUS would likely be similar to decisions of Justice Breyer.

Decisions of Democrat appointed justices don’t deviate from Democrat policy on major cases whereas Repub. appointed justices do stray on major cases ( see Roberts, Kennedy, O’Connor, Souter, John Paul Stevens).

If Hilly wins the Nov. election then let Garland go through the hearing process but otherwise no hearing for Garland.

LTWill
LTWill

That is a very high risk – no reward strategy. Leaving this nomination open would excite the liberal base (which is currently unenthusiastic about Hillary) and potentially turn moderate voters against Republican Senate candidates in swing elections. Clinton is a panderer. She’ll most likely nominate an unabashed liberal Justice to replace Scalia (and potentially Ginsberg, Kennedy, and Breyer). Better for conservatives to take a center-left Justice than a far-left liberal.

gcp
gcp

Down ballot damage would be minimal. A lame duck appointment eliminates Hilly from the Scalia replacement process. But yes, her Ginsberg replacement or any further nominees would be far left.

Ellynn
Ellynn

Unless Garland withdraws after the election…

gcp
gcp

Garland won’t withdraw unless there is a problem with his background. He referred to nomination as the “greatest” experience of his life ( or similar words) after marriage and the birth of daughters.

LTWill
LTWill

I disagree with that first statement. Republicans are defending a tough senate map this year. They’ll keep the House but there are around 6 seats that Dems could pick up in the Senate. The republicans in these states really need to worry about motivated liberals.

gcp
gcp

Kirk, Ayotte and Johnson are vulnerable but they are vulnerable with or without the SCOTUS issue. Not sure on Portman but who are the other two that are vulnerable?

LTWill
LTWill

Toomey barely won Pennsylvania in the 2010 wave and Florida has an open seat since Rubio isn’t running.

Andrew C. Pope
Andrew C. Pope

Louisiana may be in play as well, depending on whether you see Bel Edwards’ victory in the governor’s race as more than a referendum on Vitter’s crappiness.

In addition, this hurts the GOP in their effort to unseat Bennet in CO or take Reid’s open seat in NV, where they’re already facing an uphill battle due to the likely nominee’s myriad issues with Latinos.

Dave Bearse
Dave Bearse

It would be hard to name someone that is more a compromise nominee than Garland. Consider also his age.

Ryan, supposedly the budget guy, is now in trouble with the Freedom Caucus on his budget. More demonstration the national GOP can’t govern.

Ellynn
Ellynn

It’s called the Greenhouse Effect (the person, not the climate).

Dave Bearse
Dave Bearse

Johnny Isakson, April 28, 2005, on the floor of the US Senate “The question is simple and our responsibility is clear. Every judge nominated by this president – or any president – deserves an up or down vote, one way or another. It is the responsibility of the Senate. It is the direction of the Constitution.” Holding up a copy of the U.S. Constitution, Isakson said, “This document is substance. It is the thing that has made the difference in the United States of America and any other country that has ever been formed since the creation of this earth.… Read more »

Bart
Bart

Another reason why every incumbent should face serious primary opposition. Isakson gets a free pass despite stuff like this where he and all the rest of the GOPers go against the very document they proclaim to support with undying loyalty.

Dave Bearse
Dave Bearse

The reason given was that the next President should make the appointment, except that there already is talk that Garland will be a lame duck confirmation if Clinton is elected.

Benevolus
Benevolus

What is the status of cases currently before the court? My understanding is that they often decide these right after arguments but weeks or even months may pass before they are announced. Does Scalia’s death affect any of those?
What if they are in the process of writing the opinion. Do they re-poll before they write it? Re-assign it?

Andrew C. Pope
Andrew C. Pope

Justice Scalia is no longer a member of the Court, so no opinions will be issued in his name. His “vote” does not count post mortem, so any 5-4 majorities he was a part of will now become 4-4 ties. This leaves SCOTUS with the option of re-hearing the case after the new justice is appointed (which they may not do because if the uncertainty surrounding this appointment) or affirming the lower court ruling without setting a national standard. Any majority opinions he had in the works will be finished by another Justice and either published by that Justice or… Read more »

edatlanta
edatlanta

I’m going to continue to ask Republicans at what point does a POTUS lose his legitimacy to govern? When Scalia died, Obama had almost 25% of his term left.

And, if Republicans are feeling truly bold, would you have cared as much from an intellectual perspective about this had it been any SCOTUS Justice other than a GOP-nominated one?

Andrew C. Pope
Andrew C. Pope

Obama became a lame duck right after the midterms.

Andrew C. Pope
Andrew C. Pope

The President only being allowed 6 effective years during an 8 year term is a bipartisan tribute to Calvin Cooledge and Ronald Reagan.