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Petition for hearings on Scalia's successor gains 170,000 signatures

Petition for hearings on Scalia's successor gains 170,000 signatures
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An online petition demanding that Senate Republicans hold hearings and allow an up-or-down vote on President Obama’s nominee for the Supreme Court has gained over 170,000 signatures.

Credo Action, which refers to itself as a social change organization, posted the petition less than 24 hours after news of Justice Antonin Scalia’s death broke on Saturday and Republicans started pledging to block any Obama nominee.

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Hours after Scalia’s death, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellMitch McConnellSenate Democrats dig in as shutdown approaches Overnight Healthcare: Burwell huddles with Dems on fighting ObamaCare repeal Reid: Bring back the earmarks MORE (R-Ky.) said the next president should choose Scalia's successor, a position that was later echoed by several others, including Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck GrassleyChuck GrassleyMnuchin, Price meet with GOP senators Business groups express support for Branstad nomination 10 no-brainer ways to cut healthcare costs without hurting quality MORE (R-Iowa), Sen. John McCainJohn McCainSenate votes to elevate Cyber Command in military Senate sends annual defense bill to Obama's desk Trump really can't do much to reduce tensions with Putin's Russia MORE (R-Ariz.), and Sen. Richard BurrRichard BurrTop Intel Dem: Congress 'far from consensus' on encryption Trump must be an advocate for the Small Business Administration Dems pledge to fight Sessions nomination MORE (R-N.C.), who are all up for reelection this year.

Credo Action disagrees.

“President Obama has the constitutional power under Article II to nominate a new Supreme Court justice with the advice and consent of the Senate,” Heidi Hess, the group’s senior campaign manager, said in a statement. “Preemptively challenging that power and promising to undermine it is an unprecedented abdication of constitutional responsibility.”

The group referred to GOP challenges as partisan obstruction that violates their duty to the nation.

“We have to show that the political cost of obstruction will be too high," the petition says. "Tell Senate Republican leadership: You must hold fair hearings and a timely up or down vote for President Obama’s nominee for Justice Scalia’s replacement on the Supreme Court."