Democratic lawmakers lashed out at Republicans for the U.S. Supreme Court's blocking of President Barack Obama's immigration programs on Thursday.
They blamed the high court's 4-4 tie on the GOP's refusal to consider filling the vacancy left by conservative jurist Anton Scalia with Obama's moderate nominee, Merrick Garland.
"Today's decision shows the terrible human cost of Senate Republicans' reckless refusal to fill the vacancy on the Supreme Court created by Justice Scalia's death," said Sen. Dick Durbin, an Illinois Democrat.
Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid added the 4-4 split showed "the need for a fully functioning Supreme Court" and urged Republicans to "move without delay on the nomination of Judge Merrick Garland."
The tie over the commander-in-chief's plan — which would prevent millions of illegal immigrants from deportation and help get them work permits — leaves intact a lower-court ruling blocking the plan.
"The responsibility for the legal limbo that results from a deadlocked court lies solely with Senate Republicans," said Sen. Chuck Schumer, a New York Democrat, The Hill reported
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