Sen. Cory Gardner, a Colorado Republican, reverses 2016 position and now says he will vote to fill a Supreme Court vacancy in an election year

AP Photo/David ZalubowskiPresident Donald Trump jokes with Sen. Cory Gardner, R-Colo., at a campaign rally Thursday, Feb. 20, 2020, in Colorado Springs, Colo.
  • US Senator Cory Gardner, a Colorado Republican up for reelection this November, announced Monday that he will vote to confirm a qualified Supreme Court nominee from President Donald Trump.
  • “Should a qualified nominee… be put forward, I will vote to confirm,” Gardner said in a statement.
  • That’s a dramatic reversal from Gardner’s 2016 stance on filling Supreme Court vacancies in an election year.
  • “Our next election is too soon and the stakes are too high,” Gardner said eight months before the 2016 election. “[T]he American people deserve a role in this process as the next Supreme Court nominee will influence the direction of this country for years to come.”
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US Senator Cory Gardner, a Colorado Republican on track to be voted out this November, said Monday that he is willing to support President Donald Trump’s next nominee for the Supreme Court.

“I have and will continue to support judicial nominees who will protect our Constitution, not legislate from the bench, and uphold the law,” Gardner said in a statement. “Should a qualified nominee who meets this criteria be put forward, I will vote to confirm.”

As with other Republican senators, the statement is a remarkable departure from Gardner’s stance on election-year nominees as enunciated in 2016, when he and his colleagues flatly rejected the notion of filling a Supreme Court vacancy during a presidential campaign.

“Our next election is too soon and the stakes are too high,” Gardner said eight months before the 2016 election. “[T]he American people deserve a role in this process as the next Supreme Court nominee will influence the direction of this country for years to come.”

Gardner’s latest position on Supreme Court vacancies comes 43 days before the 2020 election, with early voting already underway.

A recent survey of 800 likely voters found Gardner losing his bid for reelection by double digits.

Nearly two-thirds of Americans also believe the Supreme Court vacancy should be filled by the winner of the Nov. 3 election, according to a new poll by Reuters/Ipsos.

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