Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzOvernight Health Care — Presented by Carequest — Colin Powell's death highlights risks for immunocompromised The Senate confirmation process is broken — Senate Democrats can fix it Australian politician on Cruz, vaccines: 'We don't need your lectures, thanks mate' MORE (R-Texas) said Republicans should fight to get President Trump's coming Supreme Court nominee confirmed by any means necessary.
Trump has said he will be announcing his choice to fill the late Antonin Scalia's seat on the bench next week.
Republicans will need at least eight Democrats to support Trump's nominee to overcome the 60-vote filibuster hurdle. But Cruz suggested the GOP shouldn't rule out the so-called nuclear option to reduce the threshold to a majority. The move would be a gamble, setting a precedent that could weaken the GOP's position if Democrats come back into power.
“I think we should do whatever it takes to get him confirmed," the former presidential candidate said on Fox News's "Hannity" Tuesday night.
Cruz also praised Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellBiden says he's open to altering, eliminating filibuster to advance voting rights Pelosi says GOP senators 'voted to aid and abet' voter suppression for blocking revised elections bill Manchin insists he hasn't threatened to leave Democrats MORE (R-Ky.) for the position he has taken as Democrats threaten to block a Trump nominee.
"He’s encouraged all of us to go out and simply say we will confirm President Trump's nominees; the Democrats will not succeed in filibustering those nominees. I think thats fabulous. I agree with him," Cruz said.
When pressed about whether Republicans would employ the nuclear option this week, McConnell simply said: "The nominee will be confirmed."
In 2013, Democrats, who at the time held the majority in the Senate, triggered the nuclear option in order to confirm several of President Obama's nominees. The move did not apply to the Supreme Court.
New Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerDemocratic frustration with Sinema rises Schumer endorses democratic socialist India Walton in Buffalo mayor's race Guns Down America's leader says Biden 'has simply not done enough' on gun control MORE (D-N.Y.) said recently he regrets Democrats' 2013 decision, which is now easing the confirmation of President Trump's Cabinet nominees.
Trump's shortlist for the Supreme Court is said to include Judge William Pryor of Alabama, Judge Neil Gorsuch of Colorado and Judge Thomas Hardiman of Pennsylvania.