Republicans on the Senate Judiciary Committee have come to a consensus decision to not have hearings or a vote on a Supreme Court nominee in 2016.
“We believe the American people need to decide who is going to make this appointment rather than a lame-duck president,” Senate Republican Whip John Cornyn (Texas) told reporters Tuesday after a special meeting of the committee.
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said members of the panel reached a “consensus” that there should not be hearings or a vote on President Obama’s nominee.
“My decision is that I don’t think we should have a hearing. We should let the next president pick the Supreme Court justice,” he said after emerging from a meeting in Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s (R-Ky.) office.
The committee Republicans left McConnell’s office and walked straight into a lunch with the party conference to brief their colleagues.
After the meeting, McConnell said the rest of the Senate Republican Conference backed the Judiciary Committee’s unanimous position.
And given their recommendation, McConnell said, he wouldn’t bother to even meet with an Obama nominee.
“The overwhelming view of the Republican conference in the Senate is this vacancy should not be filled by this lame-duck president,” he told reporters.