WASHINGTON DC (AP) - Arkansas' two Republican U.S. senators say they remain opposed to considering President Barack Obama's nomination of Judge Merrick Garland for the nation's highest court.
U.S. Senators John Boozman and Tom Cotton said they believe the next president should choose the replacement for the late U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia.
"In a few short months, we will have a new President and new Senators who can consider the next Justice with the full faith of the people," said Sen. Cotton. "Why would we cut off the national debate on the next Justice? Why would we squelch the voice of the populace? Why would we deny the voters a chance to weigh in on the make-up of the Supreme Court? There is no reason to do so."
Garland currently serves as the chief judge for the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.
Cotton said he respects the president's right to nominate someone, but said Garland shouldn't be considered by the Senate at this time.
Boozman said voters should have a say in the general election on which direction the court will take.
"The President has a Constitutional right to nominate a candidate to fill this vacancy, but the Senate has made it clear that we do not intend move forward on it," said Boozman. "The Constitution clearly defines the roles of each branch and the President's ends with selecting a candidate for the vacancy. For Senator Reid and his caucus to claim the Senate must vote on this nominee is not only a display of Constitutional ignorance, but highly hypocritical given the words and actions of Senate Democrats in previous election years and the precedent followed for decades in terms of considering Supreme Court vacancies during lame duck presidencies."
Boozman also said that he and his colleagues are committed to giving Americans a voice in the direction the court will take for generations to come.
Copyright 2016 KAIT. All rights reserved.