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Senate Democrats Call for Hearing and Vote on Garland Before Adjourning

Statement

Date: Sept. 27, 2016
Location: Washington, DC
Issues: Judicial Branch

Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) joined an effort led by Senators Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) and Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) in calling for a hearing and a vote on the nomination of Chief Judge Merrick Garland before adjourning for another Republican-scheduled recess. Because of Republican obstruction, Judge Garland's nomination has been stalled for 195 days, making him the longest pending Supreme Court nominee in history. Despite this fact, the Republican-led Senate has also worked fewer days in 2016 than in any year since 1956 -- including the longest August recess in 60 years -- and is preparing to depart for another break through November.

"Congress has no excuse for leaving town without meeting its Constitutional obligation: filling a Supreme Court vacancy. This dereliction of duty is fundamentally damaging to our democracy and Members of Congress should be held accountable," Blumenthal said.

"Chief Judge Garland should have been confirmed by now. We have already had more than six months to examine the nominee's record, and it is not as if the Senate has been consumed with considering other nominees. The last time we confirmed a judicial nominee was on July 6th, yet despite our efforts to make progress in filling vacancies, Republicans refuse to act. They have ignored their own calls for regular order and our independent Federal judiciary is suffering as a result," Leahy said. "It should not require a resolution to keep us accountable to the oath we all swore to uphold the Constitution, but this is where Senate Republicans have led us. It is long past time for the Senate to do its job."


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