WASHINGTON — A Kansas senator’s comments expressing support for Senate consideration of President Barack Obama’s Supreme Court pick have angered conservatives and underscored the passion the issue stirs in both parties’ activists.
Republican Sen. Jerry Moran made the remarks at events in Kansas this week, days after Obama nominated Merrick Garland for the vacancy. They were reported by local newspapers and came to national attention days later.
According to reports in The Garden City Telegram and Dodge City Daily Globe, Moran said he favored Senate Judiciary Committee hearings and indicated an openness to a full Senate vote. He said it was extremely unlikely he’d back the nominee.
One conservative group, the Judicial Crisis Network, said “caving into” Obama was not serving Kansans.
Friday afternoon, Moran’s office sent an official statement from Moran on the issue.
“I am opposed to President Obama’s Supreme Court nominee and this administration’s attempt to put another liberal judge on the Supreme Court,” Moran said. “As I have said since the vacancy was created, I believe I have a duty to ask tough questions and demand answers. I am certain a thorough investigation would expose Judge Garland’s record and judicial philosophy, and disqualify him in the eyes of Kansans and Americans.”