(PresidentialInsider.com)- Republican Senator Lindsey Graham has signaled that he will likely vote against recommending Kentanji Brown Jackson for a full confirmation vote from the Senate for a spot on the Supreme Court.
The senator from South Carolina, who is the GOP’s ranking member on the Senate Judiciary, has made it clear to many people that he believes Judge J. Michelle Childs, who is from his home state of South Carolina, is the better choice for the position. Fellow South Carolina Senator Tim Scott has agreed with those statements, too.
President Joe Biden announced recently that Jackson would be his nominee to replace retiring Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer. That fulfilled a campaign promise Biden made in 2020 to nominate a Black female to the high court if he were given the opportunity to do so during his time in the White House.
Biden chose Jackson over other finalists, including Childs.
Commenting on the situation recently, Graham said:
“I was willing to get probably double-digit Republican support for somebody that would have been in the liberal camp from my state. So, they made a political decision to reject bipartisanship and go another way.”
He added that the president “can pick anybody he wants, and I can vote any way I want.”
Graham sits on the Senate Judiciary Committee, which first holds hearings for the nomination of any Supreme Court justice. Then, the committee holds a vote on whether that nominee should advance to the full Senate floor for a confirmation vote.
While the top GOP member of that committee has signaled he will vote against advancing Jackson’s nomination when the vote happens, it’s unlikely to have any real effect on Jackson’s confirmation.
Democrats hold a slight majority in the Senate — with Vice President Kamala Harris holding the tie-breaking vote — so they can push through any Supreme Court nominee they want without support from a single Republican. This is one of the reasons why Democrats want to move the process along relatively quickly, as they could lose control of the upper chamber following the midterm elections later this year.
While it’s not a surprise that a Republican senator won’t support a liberal Supreme Court nominee, this particular objection might have surprised some people. That’s because Graham voted just last year to confirm Jackson to the Court of Appeals in the District of Columbia Circuit.
Much of the focus of Graham’s opposition to Jackson’s nomination has focused on his preference for Childs to be the nominee. He has also that Childs’ chances of becoming Biden’s pick was derailed by various dark-money groups aligned with liberals.
Graham has been on the Senate since 2003, and he has voted in favor of every single nominee to the Supreme Court since then.
The South Carolina senator says Biden hasn’t personally reached out to him seeking for him to support Jackson. He added that he doesn’t know when he’ll have the opportunity to meet with Jackson in person.