On the evening of Friday Sept. 18, Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg died from complications of pancreatic cancer. Ginsburg shared a statement with her granddaughter before her death, stating, “My most fervent wish is that I will not be replaced until a new President is installed.”
Now, on the morning of Saturday Sept. 19, President Trump announced on Twitter that it is the GOP’s obligation to fill in the open seat in the United States Supreme Court “without delay”.
The Supreme Court is made up of one chief justice and eight associate justices. It is the President who nominates someone for a vacancy on the Court and the Senate votes to confirm the nominee, which is determined by a simple majority. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell vowed to call a vote for Trump’s upcoming nominee, which is said to “most likely” be a woman.
However, the Democrats countered that Republicans should follow the principle that GOP legislators set in 2016 during Obama’s presidency by refusing to consider a Supreme Court choice in the run-up to an election.
The vacant seat has now caused a frenzy with the presidential election 42 days away. The two main questions are when will the seat be filled and by whom.
The next pick could possibly shape important decisions regarding reproductive rights, civil rights, climate change, LGBTQ rights, workers rights, and even the Affordable Care Act. Any decisions made could be in place for up to 30 years because once appointed justices serve for life.
Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden said any selection for a new Supreme Court justice should come after Nov. 3. At least four Republican senators stated they would oppose a vote for a new justice.
President Trump said he has a list of about 45 people but does have a “short list” of potential nominees. He expects to announce his Supreme Court pick next week.