Breitbart News reports that Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R) will not vote in favor of confirming Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson to the U.S. Supreme Court.
McConnell announced his decision on Thursday after Jackson’s Senate Judiciary Committee confirmation hearing came to an end.
“I enjoyed meeting the nominee,” McConnell said in a speech on the Senate floor.
He continued: “I went into the Senate process with an open mind. But, after studying the nominee’s record and watching her performance this week, I cannot and will not support Judge Jackson for a lifetime appointment to the Supreme Court.”
McConnell’s problems with Jackson
McConnell suggested that he was moving towards voting against Jackson earlier in the week, pointing to several issues with Jackson that became apparent during her confirmation hearing, which began on Monday.
McConnell, for one thing, took issue with Jackson’s alleged “soft-on-crime” approach that was emphasized by Sens. Ted Cruz (R-TX) and Josh Hawley (R-MO) during the confirmation hearing. They used as an example the fact that Jackson gave several sex offenders lenient sentences.
McConnell also took issue with Jackson’s refusal, during the hearing, to say that she is against court-packing. “I assumed this would be an easy softball for Judge Jackson, but it wasn’t,” McConnell said.
Lastly, McConnell took issue with Jackson’s overall views, which he referred to as “a perfect summary of judicial activism.” Here, he pointed to when Jackson said, “Well, anytime the Supreme Court has five votes, then they have a majority for whatever opinion they determine.”
“It’s a recipe for courts to wander into policymaking and prevent healthy democratic compromise,” McConnell said. “This is the misunderstanding of the separation of powers that I’ve spent my entire career fighting against.”
The Senate Judiciary Committee will now vote on whether or not to put Jackson’s nomination before the full Senate.
It is unclear what kind of Senate Republican support, if any, Jackson has. It might not matter, though.
To be confirmed to the Supreme Court, Jackson only needs a simple majority. And, with Vice President Kamala Harris’s tie-breaking vote, the Democrats might not need any Republican support to see Jackson through.