Mark Kelly: Arizona Senate race winner should be sworn in ‘promptly’

Democratic Arizona Senate candidate Mark Kelly said Wednesday the winner of the election should be sworn in as soon as possible in accordance with the law as the battle heats up on Capitol Hill over a replacement for the late Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. 

“Regardless of who wins, once the vote is certified here in Arizona, in accordance with the law, that person should be promptly seated to work for Arizonans,” Kelly said on ABC’s “The View.”

“They’re concerned about health care, pre-existing conditions. They’re concerned about protecting Social Security and Medicare. So in accordance with the law, when the election is done, I think it’s important that if I was to win that I get sworn,” he added. 

Arizona Sen. Martha McSally is one of the most vulnerable GOP senators facing reelection, and Kelly has led the Republican incumbent in recent polls leading up to Election Day. The race is a special election to fill the remainder the late Sen. John McCain’s (R) term through 2022. 

It’s one of the most winnable seats for Democrats looking to win back control of the Senate, especially in light of the battle over filling the Supreme Court vacancy created by Ginsburg’s death last week.  

Election law stipulates that if Kelly wins the election in Arizona, he could be sworn in as early as Nov. 30, six weeks ahead of when the winners of other races around the country would be, The New York Times noted last week

Senate Republicans have largely voiced support for Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s (R-Ky.) push to hold a vote on President Trump’s nominee to replace Ginsburg, despite the justice dying less than two months ahead of Election Day. It’s become a key issue in close Senate races, including in Arizona, as McSally has joined the GOP in pushing to vote on Trump’s nominee before the end of the year. 

Democrats are calling Republicans hypocritical, noting that in 2016 they blocked then-President Obama’s Supreme Court nominee Merrick Garland to replace the conservative Justice Antonin Scalia who died about 10 months before the year’s election.

Tags Arizona Arizona Senate race Donald Trump John McCain Mark Kelly Martha McSally Merrick Garland Mitch McConnell Ruth Bader Ginsburg United States Supreme Court vacancy

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