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Jeff Flake: Republicans 'should hold the same position' on SCOTUS vacancy as 2016

Former Sen. Jeff FlakeJeffrey (Jeff) Lane FlakeOne of life's great mysteries: Why would any conservative vote for Biden? Trump excoriates Sasse over leaked audio Biden holds 8-point lead over Trump in Arizona: poll MORE (R-Ariz.) said Saturday that Republicans should “hold the same position” on filling a Supreme Court vacancy in an election year as they did in 2016. 

His comments come as President TrumpDonald John TrumpJudge rules to not release Russia probe documents over Trump tweets Trump and advisers considering firing FBI director after election: WaPo Obama to campaign for Biden in Florida MORE and GOP Senate leaders are moving on a Supreme Court nominee following the death of Justice Ruth Bader GinsburgRuth Bader GinsburgDemocrats to boycott committee vote on Amy Coney Barrett's Supreme Court nomination Mitt Romney did not vote for Trump in 2020 election The Senate should evoke RBG in its confirmation of Amy Coney Barrett MORE Friday evening.

"In 2016, nine months before an election, we Republicans said that the next president should fill a Supreme Court vacancy,” Flake, who retired in 2019, tweeted Saturday. 

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“Today, six weeks before an election, we should hold the same position," he continued. "Preserving the institution of the Senate should be paramount to any political gain.”

In 2016 the Senate GOP blocked a vote for then-President Obama’s nominee Merrick GarlandMerrick Brian GarlandDemocrats to boycott committee vote on Amy Coney Barrett's Supreme Court nomination The Senate should evoke RBG in its confirmation of Amy Coney Barrett Democrats seem unlikely to move against Feinstein MORE because it was during an election year. Those same leaders are now calling for a vote on a Supreme Court nominee less than two months before the election. 

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Flake, a frequent critic of Trump, is one of a few Republicans who have come out as opposing a vote on a Supreme Court nominee. 

Sen. Susan CollinsSusan Margaret CollinsDemocrats to boycott committee vote on Amy Coney Barrett's Supreme Court nomination Power players play chess match on COVID-19 aid Senate is leaning to the Democrats, big time, with a wave MORE (R-Maine) — a moderate defending her seat in a state Democratic presidential nominee Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonJudge rules to not release Russia probe documents over Trump tweets Trump and advisers considering firing FBI director after election: WaPo Obama to campaign for Biden in Florida MORE won in 2016 — said Saturday that she would not support a vote on a nominee this year, which Trump pointed out during a campaign rally Saturday evening. 

Sen. Cory GardnerCory Scott GardnerDemocrats seek to block appeal of court ruling ousting Pendley, BLM land plans Senate is leaning to the Democrats, big time, with a wave Cunningham, Tillis locked in tight race in North Carolina: poll MORE (R-Colo.), who is up for reelection and behind in the polls in another state Clinton won, skirted the issue of timing during a town hall Saturday.