It is a fact that the President of the United States has the responsibility to “select and nominate” a successor to any Supreme Court vacancy for. Further it is the right and responsibility of the Senate to review, discuss, consider and perhaps make an up or down decision. It is also the right of the Senate to delay if they deem necessary, for good cause, their approval or disapproval of the President’s nomination.
In past years on occasions, during a presidential election campaign, deferring a final decision until the next President is actually elected, giving him or her the right to nominate his or her Supreme Court justice to fill said vacancy, has been practiced.
President Obama wasted no time, following the untimely passing of justice Antonin Scalia, in announcing that he would provide his nominee for the vacancy to the Senate in “due time”, which undoubtedly meant sooner than later and that it was his authority and responsibility to do so.
Leading Republicans in the Senate quickly responded, pushing back on the President with a resounding “not so fast Mr. President!” Republicans said we both have rights and responsibilities with regard to Supreme Court nominations and we intend to exercise those rights, but not necessarily on your timeline.
Of course this caused a fire storm from leading Democrats, labeling Republican Senators as “obstructionists” and in some cases using the race card (as Hillary Clinton utilized in her commentary on the vacancy this past Tuesday ). Lest we forget that those who complain should not have such a short memory! No doubt Mr. Reid had forgotten that in 2006 he himself did just that – joined a filibuster in an attempt by the Senate democrats to block Samuel Alito, a President George W. Bush nominee to the court. But it has been reported that Alito did have the vote for Senate confirmation, but some 24 Democrats – including Senators John Kerry, Hillary Clinton Barack Obama – tried to block Alito.
Supreme Court decisions should be void of partisan politics but focused on the upholding of our Constitution and what it stands for at its conception by our great founders! The President nominates but cannot dictate to the Senate. They have their responsibilities and accountability as well. And blaming others for what you have done in the past is purely hypocritical and should be stopped.