Sen. Jeff Merkley said the Senate stole a Supreme Court appointment from President Barack Obama.
“One of the things I’m very concerned about is the Supreme Court seat. The appointment of this seat rightly belongs in the hands of President Obama,” the Oregon Democrat told CNN’s Alisyn Camerota on “New Day.”
“What the majority in the Senate has done is to basically steal that from one presidency and try to deliver it to another, which is going to greatly and profoundly affect the legitimacy of the Supreme Court. And that’s doing major damage to an essential institution in our country’s vision.”
Obama nominated Merrick Garland to replace conservative icon Justice Antonin Scalia after the late justice’s death earlier this year, but Republican congressional leaders said the spot should be filled by the next president. National exit polls reflect that 21% of voters said the Supreme Court was a major factor in how they voted.
Merkley said some of his fellow lawmakers are “privately deeply ashamed” by this “theft” that prevented Obama’s appointment.
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SOURCE: CNN, Eugene Scott