Trio of GOP Senators Might Support Biden’s SCOTUS Pick

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President Biden is expected to name the first black woman to the Supreme Court before the end of February to replace retiring Justice Stephen Breyer.

The White House has been in touch with a trio of Senate Republicans to secure bipartisan support; these Republican senators are Susan Collins of Maine, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, and Lindsey Graham of South Carolina.


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They have all voted in favor of at least 60% of Biden’s judicial candidates.

Presuming he receives support from all 50 Democrat senators and Vice President Kamala Harris’ tie-breaking vote, Biden’s Supreme Court candidate would not require Republican votes to be approved.

However, Republican backing would boost Biden’s nonpartisan credentials as a former two-term vice president and 36-year Delaware senator, including a long tenure as head of the Senate Judiciary Committee.

The Radical Left

Graham, Collins, and Murkowski also voted in support of Biden’s nomination to the United States Senate. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, is widely seen as a possible successor to Breyer.

However, Murkowski stated last month a “yes” vote for a lower court seat does not mean she would back the same individual for the Supreme Court. 

Per the Alaska radio station KDLL, Murkowski noted a “very substantial difference” between being on an appeals court and serving as a justice.


Other more conservative Republicans, such as Sen. Josh Hawley argued the president’s previous nominees were “left-wing activists.” He was echoing Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell’s caution against Biden trying to source his selections from the “radical left.”

On the other hand, Graham has been an outspoken backer of Biden’s nomination of South Carolina federal Judge J. Michelle Childs, another prominent candidate in Biden’s vetting process.

On Sunday, Graham told ABC’s This Week he believed Childs could “unify the Senate and likely get more than 60 votes.”

McConnell said last week, during a phone discussion with Biden, he would give Biden’s next nominee a “fair look,” despite the fact the Kentuckian, along with other hard-line Republican senators, is considered unlikely to accept the president’s decision.

The President’s Rights

Justice Amy Coney Barrett’s most current appointment in 2020 was the first time in more than 150 years that a Supreme Court nominee did not obtain a vote from a representative of the minority party.

Collins and Graham both approved of former President Obama’s nominees, Elena Kagan and Sonia Sotomayor in 2009 and 2010, but Murkowski voted against both judges.

 

Last week, Biden began speaking with Senate Judiciary Committee Democrats and told reporters he limited his field of very competent people to “around four” prospective replacements for Breyer.

Breyer announced his resignation from the Supreme Court last month and intends to remain in the seat until the summer term concludes.

Such an important appointment must be properly reviewed and based on merit, not just gender and skin color.