Pence aide dismisses concerns rushed vote on Trump nominee will hurt vulnerable senators

Pence aide dismisses concerns rushed vote on Trump nominee will hurt vulnerable senators
© Greg Nash

Marc Short, Vice President Pence’s chief of staff, on Sunday dismissed concerns that a rushed vote on President TrumpDonald TrumpCheney says a lot of GOP lawmakers have privately encouraged her fight against Trump Republicans criticizing Afghan refugees face risks DeVos says 'principles have been overtaken by personalities' in GOP MORE’s nominee to fill the Supreme Court vacancy created by Justice Ruth Bader GinsburgRuth Bader GinsburgWhat would Justice Ginsburg say? Her words now part of the fight over pronouns Supreme Court low on political standing To infinity and beyond: What will it take to create a diverse and representative judiciary? MORE's death will hurt vulnerable GOP senators in light of the Republicans' position four years ago to block then-President Obama’s nominee. 

Host Jake TapperJacob (Jake) Paul TapperGottheimer: 'No reason' why Democrats shouldn't pass infrastructure bill right away Frederica Wilson rails against Haitian deportation flights, calls treatment 'inhumane' WHIP LIST: How House Democrats say they'll vote on infrastructure bill MORE asked Short on CNN's "State of the Union" if he thinks there is a risk that “this obvious hypocrisy may cost Republicans in competitive races,” referring to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellHow the Democratic Party's campaign strategy is failing America GOP should grab the chance to upend Pelosi's plan on reconciliation We don't need platinum to solve the debt ceiling crisis MORE’s (R-Ky.) decision to block Obama’s nominee to fill a vacancy nine months before the 2016 election. 

Short responded that he “rejects the notion” of hypocrisy, adding that the “historical precedent” is for the president to nominate a replacement and for the confirmation process to continue when the same party is in power in the White House and the Senate. 

ADVERTISEMENT

“I don't think there’s hypocrisy,” Short said. “Regarding the politics of it, the people of America elected Trump in 2016.”

He added that Trump was elected after having put forward a list of who he would nominate to the court if elected. 

“As far as the politics of it, I think the American people wanted Donald Trump to make nominations,” Short said. 

McConnell vowed shortly after Ginsburg’s death that the Republicans will move to fill the vacancy. 

In a statement to her granddaughter that was obtained by NPR, Ginsburg said her “most fervent wish” was to not be replaced “until a new president is installed.” 

ADVERTISEMENT

Tapper asked Short on Sunday if Trump “ever considered honoring Justice Ginsburg’s dying wish.” 

Short responded that the decision on when to nominate a justice “does not lie with her.”

The decision to vote on a nominee could place several vulnerable GOP senators seeking reelection in a tough spot with fewer than 50 days until Election Day.

Sen. Susan CollinsSusan Margaret CollinsLooking to the past to secure America's clean energy future Collins to endorse LePage in Maine governor comeback bid McConnell privately urged GOP senators to oppose debt ceiling hike MORE (R-Maine.) said in a statement after Ginsburg’s death that the Senate should not vote for Ginsburg’s successor before the election.

Sen. Lisa MurkowskiLisa Ann MurkowskiGOP warns McConnell won't blink on debt cliff Graham tries to help Trump and McConnell bury the hatchet Trump, allies launch onslaught as midterms kick into gear MORE (R-Alaska) also said shortly before Ginsburg’s death was reported that she would not vote to confirm a Supreme Court nominee before the election.

Republicans cannot afford any more than three defections and still confirm Trump’s nominee if all 47 members of the Senate Democratic caucus oppose Trump's pick.