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McConnell to meet with Trump's Supreme Court pick next week

McConnell to meet with Trump's Supreme Court pick next week
© Greg Nash

Judge Amy Coney Barrett will start making the rounds on Capitol Hill next week as Republicans ramp up work on her Supreme Court nomination weeks before the election.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellBitter fight over Barrett fuels calls to nix filibuster, expand court Trump blasts Obama speech for Biden as 'fake' after Obama hits Trump's tax payments White House hoping for COVID-19 relief deal 'within weeks': spokeswoman MORE (R-Ky.) said in a statement that he will meet with Barrett once the chamber returns to Washington next week. 

“I look forward to meeting with the nominee next week and will carefully study her record and credentials. As I have stated, this nomination will receive a vote on the Senate floor in the weeks ahead, following the work of the Judiciary Committee supervised by Chairman [Lindsey] Graham," McConnell said in a statement. 

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Graham will begin a four-day hearing for Barrett on Oct. 12, three sources familiar with the schedule told The Hill earlier Saturday. The hearing will pave the way for Senate Republicans to hold a vote on the floor before the Nov. 3 election. 

McConnell appeared to take a veiled shot at Democrats in his statement, arguing that Barrett should get a "fair process" focused on her "qualifications." 

“I hope all 100 Senators will treat this serious process with the dignity and respect it should command," he said. 

McConnell's statement comes after Trump formally nominated Barrett to the seat on Saturday afternoon to fill the vacancy created by the death of Justice Ruth Bader GinsburgRuth Bader GinsburgBarrett starts fraught first week as Supreme Court faces fights over election, abortion rights Bitter fight over Barrett fuels calls to nix filibuster, expand court Barrett to use Supreme Court chambers previously used by Ruth Bader Ginsburg MORE. If confirmed, Barrett would help lock in a 6-3 conservative majority that will shape the direction of the court for generations. 

McConnell has come under fierce criticism from Democrats for being willing to move Trump's nominee through the upper chamber despite being less than 40 days away from the November election, after Republicans refused to give Merrick GarlandMerrick Brian GarlandBitter fight over Barrett fuels calls to nix filibuster, expand court Ocasio-Cortez: Republicans don't believe Democrats 'have the stones to play hardball' Barrett sworn in as Supreme Court justice by Thomas MORE, then-President Obama's final Supreme Court nominee, a hearing or a vote in 2016.

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McConnell argued that the same party, Republicans, hold control of both the Senate and the White House in 2020, unlike in 2016. This he says, is a significant distinction. 

But Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerHouse Democrats introduce bill to invest 0 billion in STEM research and education Graham dismisses criticism from Fox Business's Lou Dobbs Lewandowski: Trump 'wants to see every Republican reelected regardless of ... if they break with the president' MORE (D-N.Y.) called the nomination decision by Trump and Republicans a "reprehensible power grab" that will undermine the Supreme Court. 

"Justice Ginsburg’s dying wish was that she not be replaced until a new president is installed," he added. "Republicans are poised to not only ignore her wishes, but to replace her with someone who could tear down everything that she built."