Obama says Supreme Court nominee confirmation above politics
WASHINGTON -Supreme Court nominee Merrick Garland says fidelity to the law and the Constitution has been the cornerstone of his professional life. He's promising to bring that same principle to the high court if confirmed.
Garland was visibly emotional as he accepted President Barack Obama's nomination in the White House Rose Garden with his family watching. He says being nominated by President Barack Obama is the greatest honor of his life, other than marrying his wife. He says there could be no higher public service in his view.
Garland says judges must put aside their personal views and preferences, and follow the law instead of making it. He says that's a hallmark of the judge he's tried to be for the last 18 years.
Garland is currently the chief judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.
Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Charles Grassley isn't swayed by President Barack Obama's pick for a Supreme Court nominee.
President Barack Obama nominated appeals court judge Merrick Garland to replace Justice Antonin Scalia, who died last month. Senate Republicans have said for weeks that they won't hold a hearing or a vote on Obama's nominee.
In a statement issued just after Garland spoke in the White House Rose Garden, Republican Grassley said "a lifetime appointment that could dramatically impact individual freedoms and change the direction of the court for at least a generation is too important to get bogged down in politics."
He said this year is an opportunity for the country to have an honest debate about the role of the Supreme Court.