Two-thirds of Americans want the Senate to hold hearings for a potential nominee to fill the empty seat on the Supreme Court left by the death of Justice Antonin Scalia, according to a CNN/ORC poll released Thursday.
Fifty-eight percent of respondents said they want President Obama to nominate a justice this year, and 41 percent said they would prefer the seat remain vacant until after the November elections.
In fact, more Republicans, 67 percent, than Democrats, 60 percent, said they want the Senate to hold hearings on the nominee.
Still, the poll found 48 percent believes that if Senate Republicans disapprove of a nominee after hearings are held, they would be justified in preventing a confirmation vote.
And there are still partisan divides on whether the president should even nominate someone. Eighty-two percent of Democrats and 59 percent of independents want Obama to select a nominee, while just 29 percent of Republicans think he should.
Obama has vowed to nominate a justice, and recent reports say he is vetting a federal judge from Iowa, the home state of Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck GrassleyChuck GrassleyOvernight Cybersecurity: Guccifer plea deal raises questions in Clinton probe Could Romanian hacker ‘Guccifer’ assist FBI’s probe of Clinton? Senate panel delays email privacy vote amid concerns MORE (R).
The poll surveyed 1,001 adults Feb. 24–27. It has a margin of error of 3 percentage points.