Orrin Hatch On Supreme Court Process: It’s Mitch McConnell’s Call

Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, speaks about health care at the Capitol in Washington, Wednesday, Feb. 2, 2011. A Republican drive to repeal the year-old health care law ended in party-line defeat in the Senate on Wednesda... Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, speaks about health care at the Capitol in Washington, Wednesday, Feb. 2, 2011. A Republican drive to repeal the year-old health care law ended in party-line defeat in the Senate on Wednesday, leaving the Supreme Court to render a final, unpredictable verdict on an issue steeped in political and constitutional controversy. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin) MORE LESS
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Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT), a former chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, declared Wednesday that the president has a right to nominate a Supreme Court justice to replace the late Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, but Senate leadership also has the right to do with that nomination what they please.

He argued if Obama was to appoint a Supreme Court justice now, it could “smear the court.”

“He’s going to go ahead, and he’s going to make a nomination. He has every right to do that,” Hatch said on CNN. “But the Senate has every right to say, well, we think to hold hearings and to confirm somebody with less politics involved will be the first first of next year.”

Hatch backed his leader’s earlier statement saying that “McConnell is right” to want to put off a nomination fight until after the “brouhaha time” of the presidential election.

If the process does move forward in the Senate, Hatch said he did not believe that a nominee should be filibustered. He argued it would just be easier for Sen. Charles Grassley (R-IA), the chairman of the Judiciary Committee, to block the nomination in committee.

“No, I don’t think we should filibuster Supreme Court nominees or any judge nominees. We wouldn’t have to filibuster. Just — all it would take is for Senator Grassley to just say, look, we’re not going to confirm anybody this year. The reason we’re not going to confirm is because we value the court, we don’t want it to be in this political atmosphere. Value the integrity of the court, and we’re going to put it over until next year,” Hatch said.

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  1. By the way, I know everyone here who is enraged by this spectacle voted in 2010 and 2014. Right? Riiight?

  2. His brain is as numb as his face.

  3. He argued if Obama was to appoint a Supreme Court justice now, it could “smear the court.”

    The court has been able to do it’s own “smearing” just fine thanks.

  4. Yeah, I think I’ll tell my boss I’ll get to that important matter, vital to the functioning of our business, early in 2017, after my long Christmas break.

  5. OK, does this mean they really think they’ll win POSTUS and keep the Senate?

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