McConnell: GOP has the votes to confirm Barrett to Supreme Court this month
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said on Thursday that Republicans have the votes to confirm Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett this month.
“She’ll come out of committee next Thursday … and we’ll go to the floor with her on Friday the 23rd and stay on it until we finish,” McConnell told reporters in Kentucky.
“We have the votes,” he added, when asked if Republicans would be able to confirm Barrett.
McConnell’s remarks are the latest signal that Barrett’s nomination to succeed the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg is on a glide path after she avoided landmines during her three-day appearance before the Senate Judiciary Committee this week.
Republicans on the panel have scheduled a committee vote on Barrett’s nomination for Oct. 22.
That will allow McConnell to take a procedural step to call up her nomination for a vote the next day, paving the way for a final vote on her nomination on the Senate floor for the week of Oct. 26.
Democrats are expected to force Republicans to show they have the 51 members on the floor necessary to conduct business but are otherwise powerless to stop her from being confirmed without help from GOP senators.
Because Republicans nixed the 60-vote procedural threshold for Supreme Court nominees in 2017, Barrett only needs 50 “yes” votes and Vice President Pence to break a tie in order to be confirmed.
Republicans hold a 53-47 majority in the Senate, meaning Barrett could lose three GOP senators and still let Pence break a tie.
Sens. Susan Collins (R-Maine) and Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) have both said they don’t believe a nominee should be voted on before the elections next month. But only Collins has said she will vote no on a nominee if they are brought up.