Del Sen. Tom Carper Calls On Republican Senators to 'Fill The Se - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Del Sen. Tom Carper Calls On Republican Senators to 'Fill The Seat'

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Sen. Tom Carper spoke to media outside Sussex County Courthouse Monday, urging Republican senators to take action. (Photo: WBOC) Sen. Tom Carper spoke to media outside Sussex County Courthouse Monday, urging Republican senators to take action. (Photo: WBOC)

GEORGETOWN, Del.- Just over two weeks after Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia passed away, U.S. Sen. Tom Carper held a press conference in front of the Sussex County Superior Court, to call on his Republican counterparts to take action in finding his replacement. He told WBOC that it was the Senate's "constitutional obligation" to hold a hearing, and fill the vacant seat. 

“Find the best man or woman you can find," he said. "If it’s a Democrat, fine. If it’s an independent, fine. If it’s a Republican, that’s OK as well.” 

Many in Republican leadership have said that they will refuse to hold a hearing, until after the election, so that the new president could make the selection. Carper said that this action would be reckless and unconstitutional. 

“People want us to do our job," he said. "We expect a president to do his. He’s president for a four-year term. He’s not president for three years. He’s president for four years. He’s trying to do his job.” 

Over the last two weeks Republican senators have been quick to dismiss this idea. 

"The absence of one of the nine justices on the Supreme Court is far from calamitous," said Sen. Orrin Hatch, a Republican senator from Utah. "But a hastily made life-time appointment could be.”

Some voters on Delmarva told WBOC they agree with that sentiment. Robert Holston of Georgetown said that the selection should reflect public opinion. 

"Some (politicians) have been in there," he said. "And tick the voters off. And you know, they get rid of them, which is a good thing. You know - I don’t care if it’s a Democrat or Republican. The voters choose. And that president should make the selection." 

At the press conference in Georgetown, Carper was joined by Alan Garfield, a law professor at Widener University. He said that not selecting somebody for almost a year could be a major detriment to the court. Garfield said this is because many court rulings end by a vote of 5-4. 

"For the sake of the nation," he said. "And for the sake of the court, they shouldn’t hold the Supreme Court hostage.”

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