Clinton: Calls To Delay SCOTUS Nomination ‘Dishonor Our Constitution’

February 13, 2016 8:26 p.m.

Updated at 10:18 p.m.

Hillary Clinton on Saturday evening released a statement on the passing of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, offering her condolences and criticizing calls to delay the nomination of the next justice.

“My thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends of Justice Scalia as they mourn his sudden passing. I did not hold Justice Scalia’s views, but he was a dedicated public servant who brought energy and passion to the bench,” Clinton said.

“The Republicans in the Senate and on the campaign trail who are calling for Justice Scalia’s seat to remain vacant dishonor our Constitution,” the former secretary of state continued. “The Senate has a constitutional responsibility here that it cannot abdicate for partisan political reasons.”

Clinton expanded on her statement during a speech at the Colorado Democratic Party’s annual dinner, calling Republicans’ calls to block a nomination from President Obama “outrageous.”

Clinton echoed Obama and noted that there is enough time for the President to nominate a new Supreme Court justice and for the Senate to vote on it before January 2017.

“The longest successful confirmation process in the last four decades was Clarence Thomas and that took roughly 100 days. There are 340 days until the next president takes office, so that is plenty of time,” Clinton said, according to CNN and Politico reporters covering her speech. “Some might say, well yes, this is an election year. Okay. But the confirmation process for Justice Kennedy took place in 1988, that was an election year, and he was confirmed 97-0.”

“So as a presidential candidate, a former law professor, a recovering lawyer and frankly a citizen, to hear comments like those of Leader Mitch McConnell’s, this evening is very disappointing. It is totally out of step with our history and our constitutional principles,” Clinton added.

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