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Hatch: No Hearings, Let Next President Choose SCOTUS Justice

 

By    |   Wednesday, 17 February 2016 06:27 PM

Sen. Chuck Grassley would be "foolish" to hold Senate hearings on anybody President Barack Obama nominates to replace U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, Sen. Orrin Hatch tells Newsmax TV.

"It would be up to Sen. Grassley whether he holds hearings," Hatch, a Utah Republican, said Wednesday on "The Steve Malzberg Show."

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"But the decision has been pretty well made that in order to protect the integrity of the court during this very, very political time and such a big political brouhaha … let's put it off until next year.

"Then whoever is president, whether it's a Democrat or a Republican, will have a right to nominate whoever they want."

On Tuesday, Grassley, a Iowa Republican and chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, left open the possibility Tuesday of a hearing if President Barack Obama puts a nomination forward, something the commander-in-chief says he intends to do.

But Grassley said he personally believes that picking a new justice should be delayed until a new president is chosen, either Republican or Democrat.

Scalia, the court's most conservative voice, died of natural causes as he relaxed at the Cibolo Creek Ranch in Texas as the guest of millionaire businessman John Poindexter.

Political jockeying for his replacement began immediately because the ideology of the next Supreme Court justice stands to tip the high court to the right or the left Hatch also cited Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, who he said seems adamant about not considering any Obama administration nominees.

"To be honest with you, according to McConnell, he's not going to bring it up no matter what. It's kind of foolish to hold hearings, at least that's the way I view it," Hatch told Malzberg.

"What will be better off is to live with that and preserve the integrity of the system so that you don't get into another big brouhaha and great, big political fight over who's going to be on the Supreme Court. We've been through so many of those and this is the worst political year I have ever seen.

"This is the worst presidential campaign I've ever seen and to throw this in the middle of this is just nothing but very crass politics. McConnell is right. The integrity of the court is more important than just trying to go forward with something just because the president wants to do that."

Hatch noted that Obama has the right to nominate somebody, but he should not expect the Senate to act.

"I like the president. He's a charming guy. He's one of the worst presidents ever, but the fact of the matter is, he has a right to pick whoever he wants to, he has the right to nominate whoever he wants to," Hatch said.

"But the Senate has the absolute right to reject it or to not hold hearings or to not bring it up."

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Sen. Chuck Grassley would be "foolish" to hold Senate hearings on anybody President Barack Obama nominates to replace U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, Sen. Orrin Hatch tells Newsmax TV.
orrin hatch, supreme court, antonin scalia, justice, chuck grassley
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2016-27-17
Wednesday, 17 February 2016 06:27 PM
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