Republicans hold a 53-47 majority in the Senate. Four Republicans would have to join the Democrats in opposing a confirmation vote to block President Trump's nomination.
- But do you understand why many Americans view this as a double standard?
MITCH MCCONNELL: I can only repeat that we have an obligation under the Constitution, should we choose to take advantage of it, to fill the vacancy. And I assure you, that's very likely to happen.
- You've spoken highly of Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Why not listen to her dying wish, apparently, to allow the next president to make this decision?
MITCH MCCONNELL: Well, as Senator Barrasso pointed out, I prefer another thing she said recently, which was she thought the number of the Supreme Court ought to be nine.
- Does the reality that we could face a contested election coming up, that it could end up in the courts, that the Supreme Court could be making decisions about the results of the election factor into your thinking about the timeline?
MITCH MCCONNELL: All kinds of things could happen. For example, my colleague, Senator Barrasso, and I think Senator Blood as well, mentioned that there have been all kinds of threats out there, way predating this Supreme Court vacancy. They're going to get rid of the filibuster. They're going to make DC a state, Puerto Rico a state, pack the Supreme Court. All of these threats have been out there for months.
What we do know is what the job is right now. The job, right now, is for those well-qualified nominee, which I expect we'll see on Saturday, to be processed in committee and brought to the floor and voted on. And that's what we anticipate will happen.