Hume: GOP Sens. Collins, Murkowski Key to Success of Trump SCOTUS Pick
Brit Hume said the confirmation votes of two pro-choice Republican senators may decide whether President Donald Trump's Supreme Court nominee will be successfully installed on the bench.
Senators Susan Collins of Maine and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska have voiced support for the legality of abortion, with Collins saying that she would find any nominee who opposes the Roe v. Wade decision to be "unacceptable."
Hume said if Trump loses the support of Collins and Murkowski "it's hard to believe" the Republicans would "pick up any Democrats" to achieve a majority confirming the nominee.
Tonight @POTUS met w/ Senators Grassley, Collins, Murkowski, Manchin, Donnelly, and Heitkamp to discuss the Supreme Court vacancy. @POTUS team also talked w/ more than a dozen other Senators today as part of ongoing outreach to get views and advice from both sides of the aisle.
— Sarah Sanders (@PressSec) June 29, 2018
Former Justice Department official Tom Dupree said Murkowski's decisionmaking should be handled "delicately" because she is one of the only senators to ever win a seat through a "write-in campaign" rather than being printed on the ballot. He said Murkowski may not be "susceptible" to the same type of political pressures as other lawmakers for that reason.
GOP Sen. Susan Collins, a pivotal vote in confirming Pres. Trump's SCOTUS nominee, says a justice who would overturn Roe v. Wade would "not be acceptable."
— ABC News Politics (@ABCPolitics) July 2, 2018
Three Democrats, all from states Trump won in 2016, supported Trump's prior pick, Justice Neil Gorsuch -- Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota, Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Joe Donnelly of Indiana.
In Pennsylvania, another state won by Trump, Sen. Bob Casey Jr. (D) said Trump is wrongly limiting himself to a list of 25 names released by the White House. Trump said last year he'd asked for input from the Federalist Society and Heritage Foundation on potential Supreme Court justices; Casey called them "hard-right organizations."
Casey's own stand on the abortion issue has become a hot topic in his reelection campaign, with Republican challenger Rep. Lou Barletta accusing him of being a starkly different lawmaker than his notably pro-life Democrat father, Gov. Robert Casey Sr., and calling the impending Supreme Court vote important to Casey's political future.
Casey told WKBN that he hopes Trump chooses a "mainstream nominee."
Hume said the upcoming battle over whoever Trump chooses is "likely to get really nasty."
Trump has said he will announce a nominee on July 9.