March 16, 2016

NM Senators to Senate: Do your job on SCOTUS nominee

United States Supreme Court

The U.S. Senators from New Mexico say it’s time for the Senate to do its job now that the president nominated a candidate to fill the vacancy on the U.S. Supreme Court.

Merrick Garland

Merrick Garland

The two, both Democrats, issued press statements Wednesday morning, shortly after President Barack Obama named Merrick Garland as his choice to fill the vacancy left by the death of Justice Antonin Scalia last month.

“I believe the President has done his job,” Sen. Tom Udall said in a conference call at noon on Wednesday. “Now the Senate needs to do ours.”

“We have a job to do here in the Senate. It is our Constitutional duty to exercise advice and consent for Supreme Court justices,” Sen. Martin Heinrich said in a statement. “It is my sincere hope that all of us will take that job seriously by holding hearings, conducting interviews and, ultimately, by holding a vote on this nominee.”

This comes with the backdrop of many Senate Republicans saying they will not consider any nominee by Obama, saying since it is his final year in office, the Senate should wait until at least January of next year when a new president .

This includes Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Kentucky, and Senate Judiciary Committee chairman Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa.

Some Republicans, however, agreed to meet with Garland.Udall also expressed confidence that Garland would receive a vote from the full Senate.

“From what I have seen this morning, Chief Judge Merrick Garland certainly has an impressive resume,” Heinrich said. “I look forward to sitting down with him and learning more about his judicial philosophy and record. I will take care to examine his judicial record closely before I make any decision on whether to support his nomination.”

“I think he’s going to get a vote before the end of President Obama’s term,” Udall predicted.

Udall said he would not say whether or not we would vote for the nominee, saying he wanted to meet with him and examine his record.

“I do want to be able to cast a vote,” Udall said.