Republican Senator Mitt Romney shocked many observers Monday by announcing that he would support a vote on the floor of the Senate to confirm President Trump’s nominee to replace the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
The move is sure to disappoint many Democrats who were counting on Romney opposing the vote.
As Politico reports:
Sen. Mitt Romney said he would support a floor vote on President Donald Trump’s Supreme Court, essentially clinching consideration of Trump’s nominee this year despite the impending election.
Just two Republican senators have asked for the party to put the brakes on the confirmation. And with a 53-seat majority, Senate Majority Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) now has the votes he needs to move forward with a nominee to replace the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
“I intend to follow the Constitution and precedent in considering the president’s nominee. If the nominee reaches the Senate floor, I intend to vote based upon their qualifications,” the Utah Republican said in a statement.
Romney said he was merely following the law in making his decision rather than taking a position based on the recent blockade of President Obama’s Supreme Court nominee, Merrick Garland, during the 2016 election. Romney said the “historical precedent of election year nominations is that the Senate generally does not confirm an opposing party’s nominee but does confirm a nominee of its own.”
Romney’s announcement means that President Trump’s pick to replace Ginsburg is almost certain to pass Senate confirmation.