Updated at 2:35 p.m. ET
In a further blow to Senate Majority Mitch McConnell’s efforts to hold a hardline on not even considering the confirmation of Merrick Garland to the Supreme Court, Sen. Mark Kirk (R-IL) has gone from breaking ranks with McConnell to calling him and other GOP senators out on it.
During an interview on Illinois radio show “The Big John Howell Show,” the host told Kirk that the Senate should consider the nominee and hold a vote on Merrick Garland, President Obama’s nominee to the Supreme Court.
“Right,” Kirk replied. “Just man up and cast a vote.”
“The tough thing about these Senatorial jobs is you get yes or no votes,” Kirk continued. “Your whole job is to either say yes or no, and explain why.”
Kirk bucked party leaders in February when he called for the Senate to consider Obama’s nominee, and has also said he would meet with Obama’s proposed replacement for the late Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia.
The Illinois senator was asked on Friday whether he believes the Senate will ultimately hold hearings on Garland.
“I think that given Mitch’s view, I don’t see his view changing too much,” Kirk said, referring to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY). “Eventually, we have an election and we will have a new president. The new president will obviously come forward with a nomination.”
Kirk faces a tough re-election battle in Illinois against Rep. Tammy Duckworth (D) in 2016.
H/t Huffington Post
Correction: An update to this story inadvertently said that Kirk represents Ohio in the Senate. He represents Illinois. We regret the error.