The Senate Can Confirm Merrick Garland. Here’s How.
The White House Petition is here:
At noon on January 3, 2017, the terms of the current members of the Senate’s Class III will come to an end. At that point, the Senate consists of 66 sitting senators, 36 of whom caucus with the Democrats. If, before swearing in the new Senators, Vice President Biden recognizes the leader of the current majority, they can suspend the filibuster, call a vote, and approve the nomination of Merrick Garland.
This is procedurally sound. It’s outside the normal order of business; but then, so was the Senate’s refusal to vote on Garland, artificially preserving a Republican Supreme Court majority even though the Democrats have now won the popular vote in 6 of the last 7 presidential elections.
Donald Trump has demonstrated contempt for the constitution. We need a SCOTUS ready to stand up to him.
Daily Kos has more.
I don’t know if this would work, and I’m sure the Republican party and Trump would just go Andrew Jackson on the Supreme Court, but anything that can trip the bad guys up is worth a shot. If you’re interested, here is a list of the senators you can call about this- you should focus on the Democrats in Class I and II who will actually be doing this, but if you know an Independent who’s not beholden to the Republicans, by all means call them.
If you’re like me and need a script, here’s one: “I’m calling to urge Senator So-and-so to support the plan to confirm Justice Merrick Garland to the Supreme Court of the United States on January 3rd, during the brief window when the Democrats will have a majority before the new Senators are sworn in.”