Ryan joins calls to block Obama SCOTUS pick

Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanDuncan Hunter pleads guilty after changing plea Trump campaign steps up attacks on Biden Trillion-dollar deficits as far as the eye can see, and hardly a voice of caution to be heard MORE (R-Wis.) said Tuesday that he supports the Republican push to block a Supreme Court nomination from President Obama to replace the late Justice Antonin Scalia.

"The Supreme Court is not an extension of the White House. The president has absolutely every right to nominate someone to the Supreme Court, but Congress as an equal branch also has every right not to confirm someone," Ryan told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

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"We are knee deep into a presidential election, and I think the precedent for not filling a Supreme Court vacancy in such a time is justified," Ryan added. 

Ryan is backing Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellTrump's legal team huddles with Senate Republicans Schumer briefs Democrats on impeachment trial 'mechanics' Trump legal team gears up for Senate impeachment trial in meeting with GOP senators MORE's (R-Ky.) call for the next president to fill the vacancy left by Scalia, who died unexpectedly in Texas over the weekend at age 79.
 
Democrats have called on the Senate to move on a replacement, while Republican presidential candidates have said whoever wins in November should make the pick, not Obama.
 
Referencing the Republican push to block a third Obama nominee, Ryan told the newspaper that "Democrats would be doing exactly the same thing if the shoe were on the other foot."
 
Still, Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck GrassleyCharles (Chuck) Ernest GrassleyTrump escalates fight over tax on tech giants Falling impeachment support raises pressure for Democrats on trade Push to investigate Bidens sets up potential for Senate turf war MORE (R-Iowa) has said that he would hold off making a decision on holding a confirmation hearing for an Obama pick until the nomination is made.