Alabama Dem vows 'independent judgment' on Trump Supreme Court pick

Alabama Dem vows 'independent judgment' on Trump Supreme Court pick
© Greg Nash

Sen. Doug Jones (D-Ala.) said Sunday that he is still mulling whether he will vote to confirm President TrumpDonald John TrumpReporters defend CNN's Acosta after White House says he 'disrespected' Trump with question Security costs of Trump visit to Scotland sparks outrage among Scottish citizens Ex-CIA officer: Prosecution of Russians indicted for DNC hack 'ain't ever going to happen' MORE's Supreme Court nominee.

"I think that I’ve got to look at this nominee," Jones said on CNN's "State of the Union." "I'm going to make an independent judgement. That’s my job."

Pressed on whether the red-state Democrat would vote to confirm Trump's nominee, Jones said it was improper to make an assumption on how he would vote based on his state's politics.

"I don’t think anyone should expect me to simply vote yes for this nominee just simply because my state may be more conservative than others," he said. "I think even the people of Alabama like to make sure they have judges that adhere to the rule of law."


Trump is expected to announce his pick to replace retiring Justice Anthony Kennedy on Monday. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellKavanaugh gets questionnaires for confirmation hearing Dem infighting erupts over Supreme Court pick Franken offers Dems a line of questioning for Kavanaugh's 'weirdly specific bit of bulls---' MORE (R-Ky.) has called on the chamber to hold a vote on Trump's nominee before the midterm elections in November.

A vote on Trump's pick would likely put red-state Democrats in a tough position — voting against the nominee could isolate more moderate voters and cost them their seats in November, but voting to confirm the nominee could weaken their support among Democrats.

In an interview on "Fox News Sunday," Sen. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamOvernight Health Care: Watchdog finds Tom Price improperly used funds on flights | Ex-Novartis CEO sent drug pricing proposal to Cohen | HHS staffers depart after controversial social media posts HHS staffers depart after controversial social media posts: report Senate takes symbolic shot at Trump tariffs MORE (R-S.C.) predicted that Democrats from states that Trump won in the 2016 election will face "a very hard decision" on the president's Supreme Court pick, urging Republicans to rally behind the eventual nominee. 

And in an appearance on NBC's "Meet the Press," Senate Minority Whip Dick DurbinRichard (Dick) Joseph DurbinKavanaugh paper chase heats up Senate Dems tell Trump: Don't meet with Putin one-on-one Dem infighting erupts over Supreme Court pick MORE (D-Ill.) declined to say whether every Democrat in the chamber would oppose Trump's nominee, because the pick has not yet been announced.

He also disputed the notion that Senate Democrats would vote on the nominee with their reelection bids in mind.