"Given that the American people have elected a president and a Senate majority with drastically different views on the nature of legitimate constitutional government—a split decision of sorts—it seems appropriate to let 2016 voters decide which of two very different paths the Supreme Court should take. ...Considering a nominee in the midst of a toxic presidential election would be irresponsible. Doing so would only further inject a circus atmosphere into an already politicized confirmation process. Conducting a thoughtful and substantive deliberation after the election is in the best interests of the Senate, the judiciary, and the country."—Republican Senator Orrin Hatch, in an op-ed for the New York Times, "Let Voters Decide the Court's Future."
1. The voters decided when we reelected President Obama in 2012. FOR CRYING OUT LOUD.
2. Who, exactly, "politicized" this confirmation process, Senator Hatch? It sure wasn't President Obama, who put forth a consensus nominee about whom one Republican Senator said in 2010 there was "no question" that he would be confirmed for the Supreme Court, and who said just before President Obama made his selection: "The president told me several times he's going to name a moderate [to fill the court vacancy], but I don't believe him. [Obama] could easily name Merrick Garland, who is a fine man. He probably won't do that because this appointment is about the election. So I'm pretty sure he'll name someone the [liberal Democratic base] wants." That Senator? ORRIN HATCH.
3. Does anyone believe for one second that if Hillary Clinton or Bernie Sanders were elected president, the Republicans would say, "Welp, the voters have decided! Let's have that thoughtful and substantive deliberation we wanted!" Get real.
4. Republican Senators continue to play this obstructionism game at their own peril. Across the board, their constituents want the Senate to do their job. Hatch and his compatriots can try to accuse Democrats of "playing politics" all they want, but the people—including their own base—know who's really "politicizing" this confirmation process. And they're not happy about it.