Murkowski: 'My Position Has Not Changed' on Court Vacancy

The Alaska Republican opposes drive to fill Ginsburg's seat before Nov. 3
By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 20, 2020 12:10 PM CDT
Murkowski: I'm Also Against Filling Supreme Court Seat
Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, speaks during a Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee hearing to discuss vaccines and protecting public health during the coronavirus pandemic on Capitol Hill, Wednesday, Sept. 9, 2020, in Washington.   (Greg Nash/Pool via AP)

First, Sen. Susan Collins. Now Sen. Lisa Murkowski says she's also against filling the Supreme Court vacancy before the election—a hotbutton issue that has America's political temperature in the red, the New York Times reports. "For weeks, I have stated that I would not support taking up a potential Supreme Court vacancy this close to the election," said the Alaska Republican on Sunday. "Sadly, what was then a hypothetical is now our reality, but my position has not changed. I did not support taking up a nomination eight months before the 2016 election to fill the vacancy created by the passing of Justice Scalia. We are now even closer to the 2020 election—less than two months out—and I believe the same standard must apply."

With Murkowski and Collins opposed, that's two GOP senators against filling the seat left by the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg before Nov. 3. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, who vows to vote for Trump's nominee, can only afford three defections. Meanwhile, President Trump has urged the Republican-run Senate to fill Ginsburg's seat "without delay" and responded positively Saturday to a North Carolina crowd that chanted, "Fill that seat," saying, "That's what we're going to do." Politico reports that he also dismissed an upcoming event with Murkowski on Twitter, posting, "No thanks!" The Hill notes that Democrats only need to "win over" two more GOP senators to put the hunt for a Supreme Court justice on hold. (See what former President Obama has to say.)

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