'Greatest honour of my life': Supreme Court nominee chokes up talking about his selection

Merrick GarlandGetty ImagesJudge Merrick Garland.

Supreme Court nominee Merrick Garland became emotional Wednesday during his nomination speech.

Merrick, the chief judge of the DC Circuit Court, recalled his humble upbringing, tearing up while thanking his family and discussing the nomination.

“This is the greatest honour of my life, other than Lynn agreeing to marry me,” Garland said of his wife.

He continued: “I know that my mother is watching this on television and crying her eyes out. So are my sisters, who have supported me in every step I have ever taken.”

Garland emotionally recounted his judicial record. He highlighted his tenure as a prosecutor, including his role prosecuting the Oklahoma City bombing suspect in the 1990s. He also spoke about the court’s role as a neutral arbiter in American life, and the need for Americans to believe “that the justice system can work.”

“Trust that justice will be done in our courts without prejudice or partisanship is what in a large part distinguishes this country from others. People must be confident that a judge’s decisions are determined by the law and only the law,” Garland said.

“Fidelity to the Constitution and the law has been the cornerstone of my professional life,” he added. And it is the hallmark of the kind of judge that I have tried to be for the last 18 years.”

Garland faces enormous challenges to his appointment. Senate Republican reiterated on Wednesday that they would not consider President Barack Obama’s nominee and would instead wait for the next president to appoint a justice to fill Justice Antonin Scalia’s vacancy.

Speaking before Garland took the lectern, Obama noted the respect for Garland from politicians across the political spectrum.

“Over my seven years as president, in all my conversations with senators from both parties, in which I asked their views on qualified Supreme Court nominees … the one name that has come up repeatedly from Republicans and Democrats alike is Merrick Garland,” Obama said.

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