President Donald Trump had poignant words for his predecessor over the new Supreme Court vacancy.
In an essay commemorating Ruth Bader Ginsburg, former President Barack Obama suggested the high court’s vacancy must remain open in the spirit of “consistency.”
Four and a half years ago, when Republicans refused to hold a hearing or an up-or-down vote on Merrick Garland, they invented the principle that the Senate shouldn’t fill an open seat on the Supreme Court before a new president was sworn in. A basic principle of the law — and of everyday fairness — is that we apply rules with consistency, and not based on what’s convenient or advantageous in the moment. The rule of law, the legitimacy of our courts, the fundamental workings of our democracy all depend on that basic principle.
On Saturday, before traveling to North Carolina for a campaign rally, Trump responded to Obama’s request.
A reporter asked: “Sir, President Obama’s pick in 2016, Merrick Garland, didn’t get a chance to move forward. That was an election year. Why should your pick get a chance to move forward in an election year?”
Trump responded: “Well, that’s called ‘the consequences of losing an election.’ He lost the election. He didn’t have the votes. When you lose elections, sometimes things don’t work out well.”
Trump asked about Obama/Garland precedent:
“That’s called the consequences of losing an election. He lost the ele… https://t.co/bGi0mXoaTo
— Charlie Spiering (@Charlie Spiering)1600552119.0
Trump has said he and the Republican-controlled Senate will move forward to fulfill their constitutional duty of filling the Supreme Court vacancy.
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