Biden: Scalia 'one of our most influential justices'

Biden: Scalia 'one of our most influential justices'
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Vice President Biden said the late Antonin Scalia will be remembered as “one of our most influential justices.”

Biden, who voted as a senator to confirm Scalia to the Supreme Court but later said he regretted doing so, praised the justice in a statement Saturday.

“Justice Scalia and I had fundamental disagreements about how the Supreme Court interprets the Constitution, but we shared a belief that sharp debates, tough questions, and deep respect for the adversarial process was an essential part of our judicial system and our democracy,” he said.

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Biden and his wife offered condolences to Scalia’s family.

Many people will remember Scalia as “a mentor, dear friend, and a man devoted to his faith and his family, who will miss him most of all, and who we will keep in our prayers,” the vice president said.

Biden was ranking member of the Senate Judiciary Committee when Scalia was confirmed, and was one of the 98 senators who unanimously voted for his confirmation in 1986.

In 1993, Biden said his vote to confirm Scalia was the vote he most regretted “because he was so effective,” according to The New York Times.

Scalia, age 79, was found dead Saturday during a hunting trip to Texas.