Sen. Lindsey Graham, the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, said Sunday that an escalated timeline for Supreme Court nominee Judge Amy Coney Barrett will allow for a vote before Halloween — as a number of lawmakers said her confirmation is all but assured.
“So we’ll start on Oct. 12, and more than half of the Supreme Court justices who have had hearings were done within 16 days or less,” Graham said on Fox News’ “Sunday Morning Futures.”
“We’ll have a day of introduction. We’ll have two days of questioning, Tuesday and Wednesday, and on the 15th we’ll begin to markup, we’ll hold it over for a week, and we’ll report her nomination out of the committee on Oct. 22.”
At that point, the Republican from South Carolina said, it would be up to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell “as to what to do with the nomination once it comes out of committee.”
Republicans in the Senate said they expect Barrett to be confirmed by election day, Nov. 3.
“What I’ve said was, this needs to take all the time it needs to take, but it doesn’t need to take more time than it needs to take,” Sen. Roy Blunt (R-Mo.) said on NBC News’ “Meet the Press.”
“And he’s laid out a plan that I think meets all the standards of past hearings and could be done before Election Day. If for some reason it’s not done, we’ll do it after Election Day, but I think we’re likely to get this done sometime in the month of October.”
Sen. John Kennedy of Louisiana also predicted confirmation by November and shrugged off criticism from Democrats that McConnell blocked President Barack Obama’s nomination of Merrick Garland in 2016.
“Here’s — as best as I can tell – here’s the rule: when the Democrats are in charge of the process, they do what they think is right consistent with the Constitution; when the Republicans are in charge of the process, they do what they think is right,” he said on “Fox News Sunday.”
“I think our founders intended elections to have consequences, and when they send people to Washington of a particular party they expect them to represent their voters,” he said.
Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) admitted that Democrats have little power to disrupt the confirmation process in the Republican-controlled Senate.
“We could slow it down perhaps a matter of hours, maybe days at the most, but we can’t stop the outcome,” he said on ABC News’ “This Week.” “What we should do is to address this now respectfully.”
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