Manchin becomes first Democrat to meet with Trump's Supreme Court pick

Manchin becomes first Democrat to meet with Trump's Supreme Court pick
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Sen. Joe ManchinJoe ManchinKlobuchar confident spending bill will be finished before Christmas Democratic frustration growing over stagnating voting rights bills Key senators to watch on Democrats' social spending bill MORE (D-W.Va.) on Thursday met with Judge Amy Coney Barrett, President TrumpDonald TrumpFormer defense secretary Esper sues Pentagon in memoir dispute Biden celebrates start of Hanukkah Fauci says lies, threats are 'noise' MORE's Supreme Court nominee, becoming the first Senate Democrat known sit down with her. 

The meeting, confirmed by a spokesperson for the Democratic senator, took place on Thursday evening. Barrett has been making the rounds on Capitol Hill since Tuesday but each of her other dozens of meetings have been with Republican senators. 
 

But he's pledged that he will not support confirming a Supreme Court nominee before the Nov. 3 election. Absent an eleventh-hour setback, Republicans are poised to confirm Barrett during the last week of October, just days for the November election. Though other nominees will have gone from nomination to confirmation in a fewer number of days, Barrett will set a record for being confirmed the closest to a presidential election. 

"I cannot support a process that risks further division of the American people at a time when we desperately need to come together. I will not vote to confirm Judge Coney Barrett or any Supreme Court nominee before Election Day on November 3rd. I urge my Republican friends to slow down, put people before politics, and give their constituents a chance to vote," Manchin said after Trump announced his intention to nominate Barrett. 

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Judd Deere, a spokesman for the White House, told The Hill earlier this week that it had extended invitations to Senate Democrats to meet with Barrett, adding that he hoped Democrats took "their constitutional duty to advise and consent seriously and confirm this well qualified nominee."

Deere and a senior administration official confirmed the meeting with Manchin, which was first reported by The Washington Post.

The question of whether or not to meet with Barrett has been a point of contention among Senate Democrats. 

Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerDemocratic frustration growing over stagnating voting rights bills Schumer mourns death of 'amazing' father Feehery: The honest contrarian MORE (D-N.Y.) and several Democrats including Sens. Mazie HironoMazie Keiko HironoSenators call for Smithsonian Latino, women's museums to be built on National Mall Democrats call out Biden Supreme Court commission Midterm gloom grows for Democrats MORE (Hawaii) and Richard Blumenthal (Conn.) have said they will not meet with her. The meetings are more of a tradition in the Senate and are meant to give senators a chance to get to know a nominee and ask questions before the Senate Judiciary Committee hearings. 

Sen. Patrick LeahyPatrick Joseph LeahyThe Hill's Morning Report - Ins and outs: Powell renominated at Fed, Parnell drops Senate bid On The Money — Biden sticks with Powell despite pressure Welch to seek Senate seat in Vermont MORE (D-Vt.), a former chairman and current member of the committee, appeared critical of the White House outreach efforts. He told reporters earlier Thursday that they had reached out to him while the late Justice Ruth Bader GinsburgRuth Bader GinsburgRoe redux: Is 'viability' still viable as a constitutional doctrine? Yankee Doodling the media: How 'Let's Go Brandon' became a rallying cry against news bias Katie Couric: CNN shouldn't have let Chris Cuomo 'yuk it up' with brother Andrew during pandemic MORE was lying in state, calling the move "tasteless." 

Other Democratic senators including Sens. Dick DurbinDick DurbinGraham emerges as go-to ally for Biden's judicial picks 91 House Dems call on Senate to expand immigration protections in Biden spending bill Bipartisan senators press FBI, inspector general for changes following Nassar case MORE (Ill.) and Amy KlobucharAmy KlobucharKlobuchar confident spending bill will be finished before Christmas Sunday shows preview: New COVID-19 variant emerges; supply chain issues and inflation persist The Hill's 12:30 Report: Biden renominates Powell as Fed chair MORE (Minn.) have indicated they would at least hold a phone call, due to the coronavirus pandemic, with Barrett. 

Sen. Chris CoonsChris Andrew CoonsSenators: US allies concerned Senate won't pass annual defense bill The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by ExxonMobil - House to vote on Biden social spending bill after McCarthy delay Can America prevent a global warming cold war? MORE (D-Del.) told reporters that he is scheduled to speak by phone with Barrett next week. 

Al Weaver contributed to this report, which was updated at 8:41 p.m.