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Ohio legislation calls on US Senate to do their job, take action on SCOTUS nomination

State lawmakers say U.S. Senate must uphold constitutional duty to advise and consent on Supreme Court nomination
April 20, 2016
Democratic Newsroom

State Rep. Dan Ramos (D-Lorain) and State Sen. Michael Skindell (D-Lakewood) today introduced companion legislation in their respective chambers to urge the U.S. Senate to consider the nomination of Appeals Court Judge Merrick Garland to the U.S. Supreme Court. The president nominated Garland on March 16, but the U.S. Senate has so far refused to hold hearings to consider his nomination.

“The U.S. Senate has a constitutional duty to advise and consent, and I believe Ohioans and the American people want their Senators to do the jobs they elected them to do,” said Rep. Ramos. “As a long-serving, well respected jurist—who has already been approved by the Senate for his current position—Judge Garland deserves fair consideration as Supreme Court nominee. Beyond that, Congress established there must be nine justices serving on the Supreme Court. It’s time to get back to working for the American people instead of moving forward with a partisan political agenda.”

Polls show that the overwhelming majority of Americans want the Senate to hold confirmations hearings to consider Garland’s candidacy and to give the experienced federal appellate judge an up or down vote. Historically, the Senate has never failed to vote for a Supreme Court Justice nominee since 1900, and it has never taken them more than 125 days to vote after the President announces his nomination.

“We are asking the U.S. Senate to give Judge Garland proper consideration,” said Sen. Skindell. “Only partisan politics would prevent a highly qualified nominee from making his case through public hearings.”

Garland was appointed to the D.C. federal appeals court by President Bill Clinton in 1997 after being confirmed by a 76-to-23 vote. He has served for 19 years on the court, and was promoted to chief judge three years ago. In 1995, Garland oversaw the investigation into the Oklahoma City bombing, which was the deadliest terrorist attack on U.S. soil at the time.