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McConnell: Democrats 'refuse to give a straight answer' on packing Supreme Court

McConnell: Democrats 'refuse to give a straight answer' on packing Supreme Court
© Bonnie Cash

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellHarris says she has 'not yet' spoken to Pence Kamala Harris, Stacey Abrams among nominees for Time magazine's 2020 Person of the Year Feinstein departure from top post sets stage for Judiciary fight MORE (R-Ky.) is calling out Democrats for not ruling out the prospect of their party adding more seats to the Supreme Court if former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenHarris says she has 'not yet' spoken to Pence Kamala Harris, Stacey Abrams among nominees for Time magazine's 2020 Person of the Year Obama: Republican Party members believe 'white males are victims' MORE wins the White House and they capture the Senate.

“It is bizarre to watch Vice President Biden and other Democrats refuse to give a straight answer on their own party’s threats to pack the Supreme Court,” McConnell said in a statement Wednesday afternoon.

Biden sidestepped the question during his debate with President TrumpDonald John TrumpUSAID administrator tests positive for COVID-19 Kamala Harris, Stacey Abrams among nominees for Time magazine's 2020 Person of the Year DOJ appeals ruling preventing it from replacing Trump in E. Jean Carroll defamation lawsuit MORE last month when moderator Chris WallaceChristopher (Chris) WallaceBiden adviser: 'He does not have any concern' about Trump lawsuits Public health expert: Americans no longer acting 'with common purpose' on pandemic Anti-Defamation League criticizes White House appointee 'who has consorted with racists' MORE pressed him on threats by some Democrats to pack the high court in retaliation for Republicans moving to fill the late Justice Ruth Bader GinsburgRuth Bader GinsburgMcConnell pushed Trump to nominate Barrett on the night of Ginsburg's death: report COVID-19: Justice Alito overstepped judicial boundaries Defusing the judicial confirmation process MORE’s seat before Election Day.

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"Whatever position I take on that, that’ll become the issue. The issue is the American people should speak. You should go out and vote. You’re voting now. Vote and let your senators know strongly how you feel," Biden said at the debate.

When Trump interjected and pressed him on the issue, Biden said, "I'm not going to answer the question."

Earlier this week, Biden said he's "not a fan" of court packing, but declined to elaborate on whether he would oppose any efforts to add more justices to the bench.

Biden’s running mate, Sen. Kamala HarrisKamala HarrisHarris says she has 'not yet' spoken to Pence Kamala Harris, Stacey Abrams among nominees for Time magazine's 2020 Person of the Year Mexican president breaks with other world leaders, refusing to acknowledge Biden win until election is finalized MORE (D-Calif.), when asked about the issue has said she’s more focused on the election.

“The focus right now is on reminding people that we have this election that is very much in play,” she told CNN’s Jake TapperJacob (Jake) Paul TapperJake Tapper jokes he's retained Giuliani to look into fraud in 'Sexiest Man' election Brennan takes final shot at Trump: 'I leave his fate to our judicial system, his infamy to history, & his legacy to a trash heap' Biden transition adviser: Legal action for ascertainment of win 'isn't our preference' MORE last month.

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McConnell noted in his statement that Biden, while in the Senate, strongly opposed adding more seats to the Supreme Court.

“Throughout Vice President Biden’s Senate career, he condemned the idea of packing the Supreme Court. He called President Roosevelt’s failed attempt a ‘terrible mistake.’ He praised the ‘courage’ of Senators who stopped it,” McConnell said.

“If Vice President Biden still believed that, it would be easy to say so,” he added. “The only reason to duck, dodge, and obfuscate if the far left is now calling the shots.”

The GOP leader added, as he has pointed out on several occasions, that Ginsburg voiced opposition to expanding the court.

“Court-packing by either party would guarantee retribution when the Senate and the White House next changed hands. The escalation would not end. Our independent judiciary would spiral into one more partisan battleground. And the judgments of Supreme Court would be delegitimized,” McConnell warned.

The topic came up during McConnell’s debate with Democratic challenger Amy McGrath earlier in this week in Kentucky.

McGrath declined to say whether she supports adding more justices.

“I think we should be working on unpacking the Senate,” she said and accused McConnell of having “polarized and made this partisan mess of a Supreme Court so bad.”

McConnell immediately tried to tie her to the Democratic presidential nominee.

“She won’t answer the question and Joe Biden won’t answer the question either. What Biden says is, ‘I’ll tell you after the election' whether or not he’s going to pack the Supreme Court,” he said.