Klobuchar: GOP can't use 'raw political power right in middle of an election'

Klobuchar: GOP can't use 'raw political power right in middle of an election'
© Greg Nash

Sen. Amy KlobucharAmy KlobucharHillicon Valley — Presented by Xerox — Officials want action on cyberattacks Senate panel advances antitrust bill that eyes Google, Facebook This week: Democrats face mounting headaches MORE (D-Minn.) said Sunday the Republican Party set a precedent in 2016 in blocking President Obama’s Supreme Court nominee ahead of and upcoming election and urged her Republican colleagues to block a vote on any appointee nominated by 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 to replace the late 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

“State of the Union” 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 questioned Klobuchar on CNN on her comments pushing for a vote on Obama's nominee, Merrick GarlandMerrick GarlandAbbott promises to hire Border Patrol agents punished by Biden administration House passes bill to ensure abortion access in response to Texas law Delta pushes for national 'no fly' list of unruly passengers after banning 1,600 from flights MORE, ahead of the 2016 election, asking her if the “Constitution is still clear,” as she said at the time in pushing for a vote.

“A new rule was set by our colleagues,” said Klobuchar, who is on the Senate Judiciary Committee, of the Republicans' decision to block Obama’s nominee in 2016. 


“They set this precedent, they can’t mess around and use raw political power right in the middle of an election,” she added. 

Tapper also noted that the 2016 Supreme Court vacancy occurred 10 months out from the election, whereas there are now fewer than 50 days ahead of the forthcoming presidential election. 

Klobuchar also said a “major difference” is the timing, noting that people in her state are “voting right now.” 

Asked what Democrats may do to try to stop a vote, Klobuchar said “a number of” GOP senators have said they think the next president should appoint a nominee. 

Tapper pressed Klobuchar, asking her if there is another plan other than trying to appeal to Republicans. 


“Right now, Ruth Bader Ginsburg just died recently. While 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 has said what he has said, these people aren't beholden to him,” Klobuchar responded, referring to the Republican Senate majority leader.

She added that different strategies should be considered, but again pointed to a number of Republican senators who are going to have to make a decision for themselves. 

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.), one of most vulnerable GOP senators facing reelection in the fall, has come out and said the Senate should not vote to confirm 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, ahead of Ginsburg’s death on Friday, that she would not vote to confirm a Supreme Court nominee before the election. 

Republicans could not afford any more than three defections to confirm Trump’s nominee if all 47 members of the Senate Democratic caucus oppose Trump’s pick.