Posted on August 15, 2016
Five Republican Senators Won’t Vote For Trump, But They’ll Let Him Select The Next Supreme Court Justice
If Donald Trump is too dangerous to be president, he is too dangerous to put a judge on the Supreme Court.
This week Maine Sen. Susan Collins became the latest Republican to publicly state she will not vote for Donald Trump. Collins now joins Illinois’ Mark Kirk, Nebraska’s Ben Sasse, South Carolina’s Lindsey Graham, and Nevada’s Dean Heller, who have all previously stated they would not support Trump’s candidacy.
While Sen. Collins talks about Trump’s “unsuitability for office,” she and her four Republican colleagues continue to enable extreme right-wing Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s unprecedented obstruction of Merrick Garland’s nomination. Sen. Collins and her Republican colleagues cannot have it both ways. They cannot disavow Trump on the one hand while continuing to help ensure that if a racist, fascist like Trump does win the presidency, he will get to fill Antonin Scalia’s seat on the Supreme Court.
Merrick Garland is a judge whose qualifications and fitness to serve on the Supreme Court are undoubted. With no grounds to block Garland on his record or competence, Republicans have instead resorted to making the argument that President Obama should not have made the appointment in the last year of his term. This argument is clearly grounded in partisan politics and in a desire to let a Republican president-elect pick the nominee— for the senators who have rejected Trump, the argument falls completely apart.
These senators can use their influence and authority to challenge Republican leaders to move Garland’s nomination. A statement expressing their belief that the danger of a Donald Trump presidency necessitates immediate action by the Senate to confirm Garland would make an enormous impact on the process and highlight the dangerous political game being played by their Republican colleagues.
If Collins, Kirk, Sasse, Graham, and Heller fail to do everything in their power to move the Garland nomination through the Senate, they will be making clear that their stand on Trump is not an act of courage, but one of political expediency. They are attempting to separate themselves from the Trump campaign while refusing to take concrete action to stand against him in case he is elected.
It’s stunning hypocrisy to stand up against a dangerous, extremist bigot while refusing to use your power and authority to keep that bigot from gaining and using power.
We must speak out now to put public pressure on Sens. Collins, Kirk, Sasse, Graham and Heller to do everything they can to break their party’s blockade of Garland’s nomination and keep this Supreme Court appointment out of Trump’s hands.