Merrick Garland recently submitted his completed questionnaire to the Senate Judiciary Committee. This is a standard questionnaire provided to judicial nominees as part of the confirmation process.
This article from the White House blog emphasizes how important the questionnaire is for both members of the Senate Judiciary Committee as well as the American people. The questionnaire is a record of Garland’s career and credentials, presenting a case for why the Senate should hold a hearing and, ultimately, confirm him as the next Supreme Court justice. Garland’s completed questionnaire can be found here.
Former Sen. Tom Coburn, known as “Dr. No,” recently spoke out about the Supreme Court vacancy. He said that the President, no matter their political party, deserves to have their nominee formally considered. The current nominee, Merrick Garland, faces majority opposition from Republicans in the Senate who refuse to give him a hearing or a vote.
This article from the blog “Daily Kos” points out that Sen. Coburn by no means feels that the Senate should confirm Garland. He believes that Republicans can show their opposition by voting, but simply voting “no.”
Sen. Coburn is highly regarded by other Senate Republicans, and only the future will tell if his remarks have any impact on others.
Charles Grassley, the Republican chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, recently met for breakfast with President Barack Obama’s Supreme Court nominee, Merrick Garland. Sen. Grassley made it clear that this was a “courtesy meeting” in order to inform Garland, in person, that he would receive no vote and no confirmation hearing.
The Los Angeles Time article states that Sen. Grassley is staying with the idea that the people should have a voice in the matter, letting the next President determine their own Supreme Court nominee.
The Supreme Court has already faced some challenges with deadlocked votes, and soon they are scheduled to hear one of the landmark cases this term.
While some claim that the Senate has a duty to give Merrick Garland, President Barack Obama’s nominee for the Supreme Court, a proper hearing and vote, others claim that there is no such obligation.
This article from the American Center for Law and Justice points out that the Senate has a co-equal role to the president in the process of naming a nominee to the Supreme Court. They have the right to either act or take no action at all in regards to said nominee. Former Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid even said once that, “The Senate is not a rubber stamp for the executive branch.”
The ACLJ encourages Americans who support the Senate in their decision to make their voices heard by calling Senators’ offices, expressing support on social media or even signing the ACLJ petition.
Sen. Mark Kirk, R-Ill., has become the first Republican to meet with Merrick Garland, President Barack Obama’s Supreme Court nominee.
According to CBS News, the two met Tuesday afternoon on Capitol Hill. Sen. Kirk encouraged the other senators to follow his suit and meet with Garland. He said that those refusing to do so are being “closed-minded.”
There are some other senators who share Kirk’s views. Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, has expressed willingness to meet with Garland and plans on doing so soon.
This blog post by Robert Schlesinger of U.S. News and World Report aims to show that the opposition to President Barack Obama’s nomination of Merrick Garland for the Supreme Court is “nonsensical.”
The blog post addresses the claims made by Orrin Hatch in an op-ed article for The New York Times. In the article, Hatch says that “throughout its history, the Senate has never confirmed a nominee to fill a Supreme Court vacancy that occurred this late in a term-limited president’s time in office.”
Schlesinger points out that this is technically true. The Senate has never confirmed a nominee this late, but solely because these circumstances have never occurred before. Schlesinger also points out that Hatch’s claims are defending not confirming Garland, but they do nothing to defend the actions of the politicians who are currently refusing to even consider the nomination.