For Immediate Release With Nominee Selected, Senate Must Act

Garland-Kennedy Countdown Clock will track progress of nomination

Posted on March 16, 2016

Statement by Common Cause President Miles Rapoport

Justice Scalia’s death left the President and the Senate with a constitutionally-required duty to nominate and confirm a successor and return the court to full strength. With today’s nomination of Judge Merrick Garland, President Obama has done his job; we expect the Senate to do its job by fairly reviewing Judge Garland’s record and qualifications and promptly voting on his nomination.

Judge Garland has a record of service as a federal prosecutor, a senior Justice Department official and for the last 19 years as a federal circuit judge. Senators from both parties met with and vetted him, and a three-fourths majority voted for his confirmation.

Now, Sen. McConnell’s obstructionist leadership means the Senate is refusing to do its job and give the President’s nominee a fair hearing and a fair vote. Senators who refuse to consider the President’s nominee are failing the American people. They are obstacles to progress and are not only snubbing the judge and the President, they’re shirking their sworn duty to “support and defend the Constitution” and “faithfully discharge the duties” of their offices. If employees don’t do their jobs, they get fired. Common Cause says unequivocally, Senate, Do Your Job!

We are 32 days past the death of Justice Scalia and President Obama has 311 days left in office. In a similar situation, but with the parties reversed, a Democratic majority in the Senate confirmed Justice Anthony Kennedy in 1988, 84 days after President Reagan announced his nomination. The vote was 97-0.

More than 35,000 Americans have visited to learn where their senators stand and demand that the Senate do its job.

Garland-Kennedy Countdown Clock

It has been almost two weeks since the President did his job by nominating Judge Garland; two weeks wasted while Sen. McConnell plays politics with the Constitution and our nation’s highest court.

Common Cause is a nonpartisan grassroots organization dedicated to upholding the core values of American democracy. We work to create open, honest, and accountable government that serves the public interest; promote equal rights, opportunity, and representation for all; and empower all people to make their voices heard in the political process.

Office: Common Cause National

Issues: More Democracy Reforms

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