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Schumer Promises To Block "Out-Of-The-Mainstream" Supreme Court Nominee


New Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., has suggested Democrats would be willing to leave the empty seat on the Supreme Court vacant indefinitely unless President-elect Donald Trump nominates someone they can support.

In an interview on MSNBC's "The Rachel Maddow Show" on Tuesday, Schumer said he would "absolutely" do his best to keep the seat open unless Trump picks a mainstream nominee.

Schumer indicated the move would reflect the consequences of Senate Republicans blocking President Barack Obama's nomination of federal appeals court judge Merrick Garland for more than nine months.

"We are not going to settle on a Supreme Court nominee," Schumer said. "If they don't appoint someone who's really good, we're gonna oppose him tooth and nail."

He added, "They won't have 60 votes to put in an out-of-the-mainstream nominee and then they'll have to make a choice: change the rules."

Schumer argued it would be hard for the GOP to change the rules, which currently subject Supreme Court nominees to a 60-vote filibuster threshold.

Trump has indicated his nominee would be in the mold of late Justice Antonin Scalia, whose seat has been empty since his death last February.

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