Republican presidential candidate Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) said in an interview aired Sunday that there should be a “referendum on the Supreme Court” in the 2016 election.
Cruz made the comment after Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia died at age 79. Cruz said that the Senate does “not remotely” have an obligation to consider President Barack Obama’s nomination for Scalia’s replacement and that the American people should decide.
“It has been 80 years since a Supreme Court vacancy was nominated and confirmed in an election year. There is a long tradition that you don’t do this in an election year,” Cruz told “Meet the Press” host Chuck Todd. “And what this means, Chuck, is we ought to make the 2016 election a referendum on the Supreme Court. I cannot wait to stand on that debate stage with Hillary Clinton or Bernie Sanders and talk about what the Supreme Court will look like depending on who wins.”
Cruz told Todd the Senate’s duty is to “advise and consent” and “we’re advising that a lame-duck President in an election year is not going to be able to tip the balance of the Supreme Court, that we’re going to have an election.”
President Obama said Saturday that he would move to nominate a new justice “in due time.”