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Video of Lindsey Graham arguing against nominating a Supreme Court justice in an election year goes viral

A 2016 video of Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C) saying the Supreme Court should never be filled in an election year went viral this weekend following the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

At the time, the senator said he was against picking a justice right before a presidential election, stating that if then-candidate Donald Trump or Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) were president and a vacancy were left at the end of the their first term, the choice should be left to the winner of the next election. 

“I want you to use my words against me. If there’s a Republican president in 2016 and a vacancy occurs in the last year of the first term, you can say Lindsey Graham said let’s let the next president, whoever it might be, make that nomination,” he said four years ago when arguing against then-President Obama’s nomination of Merrick Garland.

Graham’s prior statement contradicts his swift jump to support President Trump’s goal to approve a nominee for Ginsburg’s spot this year.

“In light of these two events, I will support President @realDonaldTrump in any effort to move forward regarding the recent vacancy created by the passing of Justice Ginsburg,” Graham penned on Saturday, as Democrats such as Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (N.Y.) and Sen. Brian Schatz (Hawaii) called him out over hypocrisy.

The video of Graham quickly went viral on Saturday, the day after Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) announced that he would bring President Trump’s pick for the Supreme Court vacancy to a vote in the upper chamber.

Democratic strategist Adam Parkhomenko condemned McConnell and Graham for their move to nominate the next justice, saying, “They can lie and be as hypocritical as they want because no reporter they give access to is ever gonna use those words.”

Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden said late Friday the winner of the election should be the decider of the next justice to fill Ginsburg’s spot.

“Let me be clear: The voters should pick a President, and that President should select a successor to Justice Ginsburg,” he said.

Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) echoed Biden’s calls, saying while she has “no objection” on the Senate Judiciary Committee’s beginning the process of reviewing the nominee’s credentials, she opposes a decision until after Nov. 3.

“Given the proximity of the presidential election … I do not believe that the Senate should vote on the nominee prior to the election,” Collins said in a letter Saturday. 

Tags Brian Schatz Chuck Schumer Donald Trump Joe Biden Lindsey Graham Merrick Garland Mitch McConnell Politics of the United States RBG Ruth Bader Ginsburg Ruth Bader Ginsburg Ruth Bader Ginsburg death Susan Collins Ted Cruz United States Senators

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