"The majority leader pledged that President Trump’s nominee to replace Justice Ginsburg would receive a Senate vote, despite his 2016 move to block President Obama’s nominee in the waning months of his term.
Senator Mitch McConnell, the majority leader, used the prospect of a looming presidential election to deny President Barack Obama’s attempt to fill the vacancy caused by the death of Justice Antonin Scalia in 2016.
Senator Mitch McConnell vowed late Friday that he would move to put President Trump’s nominee to replace Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg on the Supreme Court, breaking with his 2016 stance and setting the stage for a bruising battle that promised to reverberate through the 2020 elections.
“Americans re-elected our majority in 2016 and expanded it in 2018 because we pledged to work with President Trump and support his agenda, particularly his outstanding appointments to the federal judiciary,” Mr. McConnell said in a statement issued not long after news of Justice Ginsburg’s death became public. “Once again, we will keep our promise. President Trump’s nominee will receive a vote on the floor of the United States Senate.”
It was a stark turnabout from his position four years ago, when Mr. McConnell, Republican of Kentucky and the majority leader, reacted to the death of Justice Antonin Scalia by declaring that a successor should await the outcome of the presidential election, and then proceeded to block President Barack Obama’s nominee, Judge Merrick B. Garland.
[Follow our live coverage of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s death.]
Senator Chuck Schumer, Democrat of New York and the minority leader, sought to remind Mr. McConnell of that former position minutes after the news of Justice Ginsburg’s death, saying in a tweet: “The American people should have a voice in the selection of their next Supreme Court Justice. Therefore, this vacancy should not be filled until we have a new president.”
For Mitch McConnell, Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s Death Prompts Stark Turnabout - The New York Times