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Sen. Pat Toomey (R-Pa.) said Wednesday he's agreed to meet with President Obama's Supreme Court pick, though he still thinks the seat should remain vacant until next year.
"President Obama’s team has asked if I would meet with Judge Merrick Garland, and I have agreed to do so out of courtesy and respect for both the president and the judge," Toomey said in a statement.
The Pennsylvania Republican added he still believes voters should help pick Justice Antonin Scalia's successor by selecting the next president, who would be able to fill the court seat.
"I believe that is the best approach for deciding whether to alter the balance of the Supreme Court. I plan on making that clear to Judge Garland when I meet with him," he said.
He has not said when he'll meet with Garland. The Senate is currently in the middle of a two-week recess.
Toomey is the latest in a small but growing number of Republicans who have said they, unlike Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellHoyer signals House vote on bill to 'remove' debt limit threat Biden signs bill to raise debt ceiling On The Money — Progressives play hard ball on Biden budget plan MORE (R-Ky.), are willing to meet with Garland.
Republican Sens. Kelly AyotteKelly Ann AyotteBiden likely to tap Robert Califf to return as FDA head Poll: Potential Sununu-Hassan matchup in N.H. a dead heat Democrats facing tough reelections back bipartisan infrastructure deal MORE (N.H.), Ron JohnsonRonald (Ron) Harold JohnsonSen. Ron Johnson hoping for Democratic 'gridlock' on reconciliation package Republicans' mantra should have been 'Stop the Spread' Ron Johnson slams DOJ's investigation of schools, saying it unfairly targets parents MORE (Wis.) and Rob PortmanRobert (Rob) Jones PortmanMcConnell gets GOP wake-up call Biden shows little progress with Abraham Accords on first anniversary The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - After high drama, Senate lifts debt limit MORE (Ohio) have each suggested they are open to meeting with the president's pick, if only to explain why they think the Senate shouldn't take up his nomination.
None of the three senators — who, like Toomey, face difficult paths to reelection — have suggested they believe the Senate should move forward with his nomination.
Republican senators, including Toomey, have been under an onslaught of pressure from Democrats and outside groups to reverse their position.
Of the handful of GOP incumbents likely to decide who will control the Senate next year, only Sen. Mark KirkMark Steven KirkDuckworth announces reelection bid Brave new world: Why we need a Senate Human Rights Commission Senate majority battle snags Biden Cabinet hopefuls MORE (R-Ill.) has split with his party and backed giving Garland a hearing and a vote.