LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — The death of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia during this election year has triggered another political feud and more gridlock.
This time it is over replacing the revered conservative jurist, who was found dead in his sleep while on vacation in Western Texas Saturday.READ MORE: Jauhar Tajuddin Shuaib Of Irvine Faces Hate Crime Charge After Allegedly Punching Woman, Hurling Racial Comments At Her
President Barack Obama vowed to pick a nominee immediately. “I plan to fulfill my constitutional responsibilities to nominate a successor in due time.”
With Scalia’s death, conservatives lose their 5-4 majority in the high court. Therefore, Republicans promised to block any of the commander-in-chief’s efforts predicting that he would pick a liberal candidate who will tilt the U.S. Supreme Court‘s balance of power to the left if confirmed.
Democrats looks at this as an opportunity decades in the making. Recent Republican presidents have gotten more chances to fill seats, tilting the court in to the right.
“The Supreme Court has not reflected where the American people have been on issues,” said Gregory Craig, who served as White House counsel early in Obama’s first term. “This is the first opportunity in many, many years to bring the court more in line with the American people.”READ MORE: COVID-19 Mortality Rate 'Shockingly' Higher For LA County's Black, Latino Men; Also Have Much Lower Rates Of Vaccination
“He can nominate someone. The Senate is not moving forward until after the election,” Republican presidential candidate Marco Rubio said.
GOP presidential candidate John Kasich agreed. “I think we ought to let the next president of the United States decide.”
Republican presidential candidate and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz echoed the sentiment. “We are one justice away from a Supreme Court that would undermine the religious liberty of millions of Americans.”
Despite the fact that the high court’s decisions can directly affect people’s lives in many aspects including abortions, health care and gun control, many do not seem to be interested in the Supreme Court.
Claremont McKenna College Professor of Politics Jack Pitney said many people do not care about the Supreme Court. In fact, “more people can name the three stooges than they can name three members of the Supreme Court. That’s an actually polling results,” he said.MORE NEWS: El Sereno Recreation Center Vaccination Site To Close Wednesday, Will Be Replaced With New East LA Site
The professor added that voters are fed up with the continuous gridlock in Washington, DC. “Voters are look at this and say: ‘Why can’t you guys get your act together. Just settle it. Pick one person and move on,” said Pitney. It’s one more bit of evidence that Congress and the president can’t come to agreement that Washington doesn’t work, and the government is dysfunctional.”