Bush: I would 'probably' nominate justice in Obama's shoes

Jeb Bush admitted that if he were in President Obama's shoes, he would "probably" nominate a Supreme Court justice to replace the late Antonin Scalia despite saying in last Saturday's Republican debate that the president shouldn't pick a nominee.

At a South Carolina town hall on Thursday night, an undecided voter asked Bush whether, if he were president with 11 months left in office, he would nominate a justice or wait for his successor to do so. 

ADVERTISEMENT

"Would I nominate someone? I probably would," Bush said. "Because as I said in the debate last Saturday, I'm an Article 2 guy.  

"We should be respectful of the Constitution, but whatever powers are afforded the presidency, the president ought to use them," Bush said.

"They're there for a purpose. But in this current environment where you have such a divisive kind of environment in Washington, it is unlikely that the Senate would provide the necessary consent for that nomination.” 

Bush said he thought it was better to make the Supreme Court battle a central question in the 2016 election campaign, so that "you would have the people deciding."

Scalia died this past weekend in Texas at age 79.