Joe Biden is demanding that the Republican-led US Senate block any Supreme Court nomination
- 2020 Democratic US presidential candidate Joe Biden on Friday made clear that the Republican-controlled Senate must not consider a new nominee for the Supreme Court, after the death of Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
- He wants the Senate to follow the same precedent that Majority Leader Mitch McConnell set in blocking then US President Barack Obama's nominee.
- "The voters should pick the president, and the president should pick the justice for the Senate to consider," he said.
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Democratic US presidential nominee Joe Biden demanded that the open seat on that country's Supreme Court, created by the death of Ruth Bader Ginsburg, must not be filled until a new presidential term begins.
"Tonight, and in the coming days, we should focus on the loss of the justice and her enduring legacy," Biden said in remarks reacting to the feminist icon's death at age 87 due to complications with cancer on Friday evening.
"But there is no doubt, let me be clear, that the voters should pick the president, and the president should pick the justice for the Senate to consider," he added.
"This was the position the Republican Senate took in 2016 when they were almost 10 months to go before the election," referring to when Sen. Mitch McConnell blocked then US President Barack Obama's nominee Merrick Garland from being considered.
"That's the position the United States Senate must take today," Biden emphasised. "They should do this with full consideration and that is my hope and expectation of what will happen."
There is no law that prevents US President Donald Trump from putting forward a nominee for consideration by the Senate, which may then hold a confirmation vote and fill the vacancy before the 2020 general election. And McConnell has already indicated plans to do so, but he did not mention when.
"President Trump's nominee will receive a vote on the floor of the United States Senate," he said on Friday.
Trump earlier this month released a shortlist of his picks for the nation's highest court, adding 20 potential nominees, including three conservative senators and several judges.
In his comments after her death, Biden called the justice "not only a giant in the legal profession but a beloved figure."
"She practiced the highest American ideals as a justice. Equality and justice under the law," he said. "Ruth Bader Ginsburg stood for all of us."
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