GOP blocks Schumer effort to adjourn Senate until after election

Republicans on Monday shot down an effort by Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerMcConnell pushes vaccines, but GOP muddles his message Biden administration stokes frustration over Canada Schumer blasts McCarthy for picking people who 'supported the big lie' for Jan. 6 panel MORE (D-N.Y.) to adjourn the Senate until after the election, a move that would have effectively punted Judge Amy Coney BarrettAmy Coney BarrettAbortion rights face most difficult test yet at Supreme Court Overnight Health Care: Biden officials says no change to masking guidance right now | Missouri Supreme Court rules in favor of Medicaid expansion | Mississippi's attorney general asks Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade Mississippi's attorney general asks Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade MORE's Supreme Court confirmation until after Nov. 3.

Schumer moved to adjourn the Senate until Nov. 9, with the caveat that if a coronavirus relief deal was reached by House Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiSunday shows preview: Bipartisan infrastructure talks drag on; Democrats plow ahead with Jan. 6 probe House Democrats grow frustrated as they feel ignored by Senate Yellen to Congress: Raise the debt ceiling or risk 'irreparable harm' MORE (D-Calif.) and Treasury Secretary Steven MnuchinSteven MnuchinThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Goldman Sachs - Biden rallies Senate Dems behind mammoth spending plan Mnuchin dodges CNBC questions on whether Trump lying over election Democrats justified in filibustering GOP, says Schumer MORE that they would return to vote.

"This is the most rushed, most partisan, least legitimate Supreme Court nomination process in our nation's history ... and it should not proceed," Schumer said.


But Republicans in a 48-42 vote pigeonholed Schumer's request. The Senate is expected to come back into session on Tuesday.

"I'm glad we just voted down the motion by the Democratic leader to adjourn because we have work to do here, including the COVID-19 legislation which we need to be here to be working on. I'm glad that [the] adjournment motion was unsuccessful. Yes, we have to fill a vacancy on the Supreme Court," said Sen. Rob PortmanRobert (Rob) Jones PortmanSunday shows preview: Bipartisan infrastructure talks drag on; Democrats plow ahead with Jan. 6 probe Key Biden ally OK with dropping transit from infrastructure package Frustration builds as infrastructure talks drag MORE (R-Ohio).

Sen. Rick Scott (R-Fla.) called Schumer's move a "temper tantrum."

Schumer's attempt to adjourn the Senate comes as Republicans are barreling toward a confirmation vote to fill the Supreme Court vacancy early next week.

The Senate Judiciary Committee will vote on her nomination on Thursday afternoon, where they will need all 12 GOP senators on the panel present in order to have a quorum required to send nominations onto the full Senate. The committee rules also require two members of the minority to be present, though both sides have warned that Committee Chairman Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamSenate braces for a nasty debt ceiling fight Bipartisan group says it's still on track after setback on Senate floor How Sen. Graham can help fix the labor shortage with commonsense immigration reform MORE (R-S.C.) could change that rule.


McConnell has said that he will move to tee up her nomination on Friday. Republicans will set a new record for how close to a presidential election a Supreme Court nominee has been confirmed. While other nominees have been confirmed in a fewer number of days, those have been further away from Election Day.

"I look forward to the Judiciary Committee’s vote on Thursday. The full Senate will turn to Judge Barrett’s nomination as soon as it comes out of committee. I’ll be proud to vote to confirm this exceptional jurist," McConnell said from the Senate floor Monday.

Democrats are under fierce pressure to use any procedural lever at their disposal to try to delay Barrett's nomination. Schumer previously invoked the "two-hour" rule to delay committee hearings after Republicans made it clear that they will fill the seat left vacant by the late Justice Ruth Bader GinsburgRuth Bader GinsburgAbortion rights face most difficult test yet at Supreme Court Mississippi's attorney general asks Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade 10 books that take readers inside the lives of American leaders MORE's death last month.

But Democrats are powerless to stop Barrett on their own. If every senator votes, they would need four Republican senators to vote "no "— a hurdle they acknowledge they do not expect to meet.

So far only one Republican senator, Susan CollinsSusan Margaret CollinsTransit funding, broadband holding up infrastructure deal The Hill's Morning Report - Infrastructure vote fails; partisan feud erupts over Jan. 6 panel Senate falling behind on infrastructure MORE (Maine), has said she will vote against Barrett because she does not believe a nominee should be brought up before the election.

Senate Republicans are eyeing confirming Barrett as soon as next Monday.

McConnell can hold a procedural vote on Barrett as soon as Sunday, absent an agreement with Democrats. After that there would still be up to an additional 30 hours of debate, setting up a final vote on her nomination on Oct. 26.