SPONSORED:

McConnell: Plan is to confirm Trump's Supreme Court pick before election

McConnell: Plan is to confirm Trump's Supreme Court pick before election
© Getty Images

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellMcConnell: Battle for Senate 'a 50-50 proposition' 'Packing' federal courts is already a serious problem What a Biden administration should look like MORE (R-Ky.) said on Tuesday night that he expects Republicans will confirm President TrumpDonald John TrumpHillary Clinton responds to Chrissy Teigen tweet: 'I love you back' Police called after Florida moms refuse to wear face masks at school board meeting about mask policy Supreme Court rejects Trump effort to shorten North Carolina mail-ballot deadline MORE's Supreme Court nominee before the election. 

"That's the plan and there's nothing I can see that would keep that from happening," McConnell said during a Fox News interview when asked if Judge Amy Coney Barrett would be confirmed to the Supreme Court before Nov. 3. 

McConnell has repeatedly hinted that he would bring up Barrett's nomination for a vote before the election, including saying last week that he would take it up as soon as it comes out the Judiciary Committee. Under Graham's timeline, that would pave the way for a final vote on the Senate floor for the final week of October. 

ADVERTISEMENT

But he's also previously been cagey about saying directly that he would hold a vote before the election, even as several of his members, the White House and strategists involved in the court fight have said they expect that to be the chamber's timeline. 

McConnell's decision to say the Senate will take up Barrett's nomination before the election comes as an outbreak of the coronavirus has injected fresh doubt into the GOP's aggressive timeline for confirming Trump's pick to succeed the late Justice Ruth Bader GinsburgRuth Bader GinsburgPence seeks to lift GOP in battle for Senate 'Packing' federal courts is already a serious problem McConnell and Schumer's relationship shredded after court brawl MORE

Three GOP senators—Thom TillisThomas (Thom) Roland TillisLate donor surges push election spending projections to new heights Pence seeks to lift GOP in battle for Senate Nearly 47 percent of all North Carolina registered voters have already cast their ballots MORE (N.C), Mike LeeMichael (Mike) Shumway LeeTrump says ex-staffer who penned 'Anonymous' op-ed should be 'prosecuted' White House to host swearing-in event for Barrett on Monday night Pence adviser Marty Obst tests positive for COVID-19 MORE (Utah) and Ron JohnsonRonald (Ron) Harold JohnsonOvernight Defense: Trump campaign's use of military helicopter raises ethics concerns | Air Force jets intercept aircraft over Trump rally | Senators introduce bill to expand visa screenings Senators introduce bipartisan bill to expand screening of foreign visitors Democrat announces 2022 bid for Ron Johnson's seat MORE (Wis.)—have tested positive for the coronavirus. An additional three GOP senators—Ben SasseBenjamin (Ben) Eric SasseTrump looks to shore up support in Nebraska GOP Senate confirms Trump Supreme Court pick to succeed Ginsburg President Trump: To know him is to 'No' him MORE (Neb.), Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzHillicon Valley: Big Tech hearing the most partisan yet | Rubio warns about foreign election interference | Trump campaign site briefly hacked Tech CEOs clash with lawmakers in contentious hearing Trump announces intention to nominate two individuals to serve as FEC members MORE (Texas) and James LankfordJames Paul LankfordMcConnell says he would give Trump-backed coronavirus deal a vote in Senate Senators push for Turkey sanctions after reports Ankara used Russian system to detect US-made jets McConnell: Plan is to confirm Trump's Supreme Court pick before election MORE (Okla.)—have tested negative but are self-quarantining after being around their colleagues. 

Underscoring how the coronavirus could impact the party's SCOTUS plan, four of those six Republicans are on the Judiciary Committee. Republicans have a 12-10 majority on the panel, and are likely to need all of their members present for an Oct. 22 committee vote on Barrett's nomination. 

Under the panel's rules, to send a nomination to the floor, a majority of the committee has to be present. Democrats are not expected to help them meet the quorum requirement if a Republican senator is expected to be absent. 

McConnell, during the Fox News interview, defended how the Senate has handled the coronavirus, saying that it could "operate successfully in a COVID environment." 

"The current members that have a problem, got it somewhere else, not here in the Senate," McConnell added.