More than 60 percent of Americans think the U.S. Senate should "consider" Merrick Garland as a nominee to the U.S. Supreme Court, compared to 33 percent of people who would prefer to wait it out to see who the next president is.
Those stats come from a Quinnipiac Poll released today, which found a predictable ideological divide on the topic of Garland, put forth by President Barack Obama as a replacement for the late Justice Antonin Scalia. Some 87 percent of Democrats surveyed think the upper chamber should take a look at Garland, who has two decades of experience as a judge, and 63 percent of independents support the idea. Republicans are far less interested, at 33 percent.
One of those Americans who wants Garland to get a hearing in the Senate is DFL U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar, who was, as always, briefly listed as a possible short-list candidate to take Scalia's place on the bench. Garland has been making the rounds to personally drum up support for his nomination, and visited Klobuchar in her office on Wednesday.
According to video and photo evidence released by Klobuchar's office, they sat on a couch for a bit and chatted.
Prior to the meeting, Garland and some younger guys looked at photos hanging on the wall in Klobuchar's office.
After it, Klobuchar released a statement in support of Garland, saying he has an "exemplary" record as a jurist.
"I was impressed with Judge Garland’s knowledge of the law and his commitment to being fair-minded while finding common ground," Klobuchar said, apparently summarizing some of what they talked about on the couch in her office. "Now, it is time for the Senate to hold a public confirmation hearing followed by an up-or-down vote on Judge Garland’s nomination.”
As a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Klobuchar's opinion counts more than that of the 60-plus percent of Americans who want the Senate to take up Garland's nomination — but not much more.
Republican U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, chair of that committee, has been steadfast in his refusal to convene hearings on Garland, and affirmed that stance in an interview with the Daily Iowan. "This is not about a person," Grassley said, referring to Garland. "This is about the principle of letting the people have a voice, see."
If 62 percent of "the people" want hearings, and 33 percent do not, it seems like only some people "have a voice, see." Amy Klobuchar's not one of them.
Sorry, Merrick. You'll always have that time you spent on that couch.