McConnell doubles down on SCOTUS ahead of Obama meeting
© Greg Nash
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellMitch McConnellSpecial election sweep boosts Trump agenda Five things to watch in Senate GOP’s ObamaCare repeal bill McConnell courts GOP centrists for health bill MORE (R-Ky.) signaled early Tuesday that while he's willing to meet with President Obama on a Supreme Court nominee, Republicans are sticking with their strategy to block his selection. 
"We will reiterate that the American people will have a voice in the vacancy on the Supreme Court as they choose the next president," the Republican leader said. "In other words, we'll observe the Biden Rule." 
McConnell's comments come as he, Minority Leader Harry ReidHarry ReidDems see surge of new candidates Dems to grind Senate to a halt over ObamaCare repeal fight GOP fires opening attack on Dem reportedly running for Heller's Senate seat MORE (D-Nev.), and Sens. Chuck GrassleyChuck GrassleyGrassley doesn't see how Judiciary 'can avoid' obstruction probe Trump attacks wind power in state that gets nearly third of energy from wind Judiciary Committee to continue Russia probe after Mueller meeting MORE (R-Iowa) and Pat Leahy (D-Vt.) — the top members of the Judiciary Committee — are expected to meet with the president later Tuesday. 
Republicans have repeatedly pointed to comments from top Democrats, including Vice President Biden, as they look to blunt Democratic criticism that they aren't doing their job by refusing to give Obama's nominee a hearing or a vote. 
McConnell instead said senators and Obama should use Tuesday's meeting to talk about "ways we can work together" in areas such as combating an opioid and heroin epidemic. 
Democrats maintain that Republicans will eventually cave to pressure and take up Obama's nominee, with Reid adding Tuesday that some on the other side of the aisle are "already are starting to see ... the light." 
"The Constitution reigns supreme simply in saying, 'Do your job, among other things,'" he added. 
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, a Republican, said Monday that he believes Obama's nominee to succeed Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia should get a hearing.