Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Massachusetts), an influential member of the Senate Democratic caucus, unloaded on Republicans who have said that President Barack Obama should not attempt to fill a newly vacant Supreme Court seat after the sudden death of Justice Antonin Scalia.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) said Saturday that the vacancy should be left to the next president.
The “American people should have a voice in the selection of their next Supreme Court Justice,” McConnell said.
In fact, argued Warren, the American people did have a say — when they reelected Obama in 2012.
“Sen. McConnell is right that the American people should have a voice in the selection of the next Supreme Court justice. In fact, they did — when President Obama won the 2012 election by 5 million votes,” she said in a statement posted to her official Facebook page.
Warren, a veteran law professor, also cited Article II of the US Constitution, which gives the president the power to nominate Supreme Court justices with the “advice and consent of the Senate.” She quipped that she “can’t find a clause that says, ‘except when there’s a year left in the term of a Democratic President.'”
“Senate Republicans took an oath just like Senate Democrats did. Abandoning the duties they swore to uphold would threaten both the Constitution and our democracy itself. It would also prove that all the Republican talk about loving the Constitution is just that — empty talk,” she said.
For his part, Obama has said he plans to fulfill his “constitutional responsibility to nominate a successor in due time.” Some Democrats have pointed to the confirmation of Justice Anthony Kennedy, who was nominated by President Ronald Reagan in 1987 and confirmed during the 1988 election year.
Warren’s post had been shared almost 100,000 times as of Sunday afternoon.