Sen. Josh Hawley, R-Mo., reaffirmed his commitment to vote for President Donald Trump’s Supreme Court nominee only if that candidate explicitly opposes Roe v.Wade, the high court’s decision that legalized abortion nationwide.
Two months ago, I pledged to vote only for #SCOTUS nominees who understand and acknowledge that Roe was wrongly decided. I stand by that commitment, and I call on my fellow Republican senators to take the same stand
— Josh Hawley (@HawleyMO) September 19, 2020
Hawley’s commitment to the pro-life cause could create complications in the confirmation process for Trump’s nominee. Securing a firm statement from a nominee about their position on specific court cases, especially about the most controversial Supreme Court case since Dred Scott v. Sandford, is often difficult.
The support of two left-leaning, establishment Republicans for Trump’s eventual nominee is already in question.
Sens. Lisa Murkowski, R-Ala., and Susan Collins, R-Me., who both support abortion, said in statements that the Senate should wait until after the 2020 presidential election to vote on a Supreme Court nominee. They said the election’s winner should appoint the nominee, even if that means accepting President Joe Biden’s presumably left-wing nominee.
The Republicans can afford to lose only 4 votes in the Senate and still confirm Trump’s pick.
If the nominee does not vocally oppose Roe v. Wade, then Hawley could vote against confirmation, and the Democrats would need to strip away only one more Republican to defeat the candidate.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said the Senate will vote on Trump’s nominee, but he did not provide a specific timeframe or reveal whether the vote would occur before or after the Nov. 3 election.