Senator Mitt Romney has announced that he supports moving forward with Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg's Supreme Court replacement, despite her wishes. Ginsburg died on Friday, with her family sharing that before she passed she stated that her "most fervent wish is that I will not be replaced until a new president is installed." The majority of Senate Republicans have voiced support for confirming a judge nominated by President Trump, however.
In his statement — as shared by Politico — Romney addressed the Senate Republicans' refusal to hold confirmation hearings on Merrick Garland in 2016, who had been nominated to the Supreme Court by then-president Barack Obama, following the death of Justice Antonin Scalia. At the time, Republican leaders stated that they would not consider Obama's nomination, as it was an election year. Now, during an election year, Romney and other GOP members have expressed new sentiments. "It wasn't unfair because it was consistent with history. It was consistent with precedent, it was consistent with the Constitution." Romney told journalists. "That the Merrick Garland decision was unfair, and so therefore it has to be made up by doing something which also wouldn't make a lot of sense — which is saying to President Trump you can't get your nominee either — that just doesn't follow."
My statement regarding the current Supreme Court vacancy: pic.twitter.com/6YO0dPWWXc— Senator Mitt Romney (@SenatorRomney) September 22, 2020
Romney, who has been one of the rare Republicans to be vocally critical of Trump, added, "My liberal friends have over many decades gotten very used to the idea of having a liberal court, but that’s not written in the stars." He added, "I know a lot of people are saying, 'Gosh, we don’t want that change.' I understand the energy associated with that perspective. But it’s also appropriate for a nation that is, if you will, center-right to have a court which reflects center-right points of view."
BREAKING: GOP Sen. Mitt Romney announces that he will support a vote on President Trump's expected Supreme Court nominee this year, saying, "at this stage, it's appropriate to look at the Constitution." https://t.co/gWbBdqaaE2 pic.twitter.com/6fqIavmNiS— ABC News (@ABC) September 22, 2020
Finally, in his written statement, Romney wrote, "The Constitution gives the president the power to nominate and the Senate the authority to provide advice and consent on Supreme Court nominees." He went on to add, "Accordingly, I intend to follow the Constitution and precedent in considering the president’s nominee. If the nominee reaches the Senate floor, I intend to vote based upon their qualifications."