GOP senator: A conservative SCOTUS nominee deserves a hearing

GOP senator: A conservative SCOTUS nominee deserves a hearing

Sen. Dan CoatsDan CoatsFive things to watch in round two of Trump confirmation fights Gingrich: Trump should tell new spy chief to 'thoroughly overhaul' intelligence community Government to begin calling Indiana residents Hoosiers MORE (R-Ind.) broke with his Senate Republican colleagues this week over whether a potential Supreme Court pick that President Obama puts forth should get a confirmation hearing.

“If the president nominates someone, which is his choice, I think that person would deserve a hearing if that person is not someone that is just obviously nominated for political purposes,” Coats said in an interview this week with the Journal Gazette.

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“My litmus test here is, since we’re replacing a Scalia for justice, that it ought to be somebody who has some adherence to the constitutional position of Justice Scalia to succeed in a Republican-held Congress.”
His position is a break from that of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellMitch McConnellTrump’s team identifies top projects for infrastructure plan: report Overnight Finance: Trump budget pick on the hot seat | Dems' T infrastructure plan | Deficit to hit 1B in 2019 | Trump meets automakers | Pipelines back on GOP pans Democrats’ T infrastructure package MORE, who has called for a replacement to be nominated by the next president.
 
Coats added that a nominee who is not a conservative in the same vein as Scalia is “dead on arrival.”
 
Still, he said that it would be best to wait until after the next president is elected, arguing that it would provide “a real litmus test of where the American people want this country to go.”
 
If there is a nominee this year, however, Coats said he would judge the pick by his or her “experience, the consistency, the record, the character, the judicial temperament and the position on the role of the Constitution as it applies to the Supreme Court.”