The passing of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg means President Donald Trump will now get to put forth his third conservative Supreme Court nomination. Sadly, that nomination isn’t guaranteed to pass, even though the Republicans hold a majority in the Senate.
Prior to Ginsburg’s death, GOP Senators Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) and Susan Collins (R-ME) had already reportedly announced their decisions to refuse to confirm a justice until after the election.
Ginsburg’s passing only two months before the election now means Trump can nominate a new justice and with Republicans still holding the Senate, the nominee can be confirmed.
Senator Majority Leader McConnell (R-KY) has already stated he will hold a vote, but that does not mean the nominee will pass, especially after two GOP senators have already signaled that they will not vote on the motion before the election.
Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) has previously stated that it would be a “double standard” to vote on a new Supreme Court justice only two months before the election.
On Friday, prior to hearing the news about Ginsburg, she again said, “I would not vote to confirm a Supreme Court nominee. We are 50 some days away from an election.”
Senator Susan Collins (R-ME) has also told reporters that she would not vote to seat a new justice this close to the election…
News: @SenatorCollins told me earlier this month in Maine that she would not seat a Supreme Court justice in October.
“I think that’s too close, I really do,” she said.
She said she’d also oppose seating a justice in the lame duck if there’s a change in presidents.
— Jonathan Martin (@jmartNYT) September 19, 2020
With Senator Mitt Romney (R-UT) openly opposing Trump at every turn, it’s not unreasonable to expect that he might take the same position.
This means even if McConnell puts a name on the floor, the Republicans could lose their majority with those three defectors.
What is even more worrisome is that Republicans could lose the Senate in this election, so even if Trump does win, Democrats could hold up filling the slot by constantly voting against his nominee.
As Republicans, Murkowski, Collins, and Romney need to be held to account — are they really serving their constituents by opposing Trump at every turn, and potentially gifting a Supreme Court nominee to the Democrats?