“Judge Merrick Garland is President Obama’s pro-abortion pick to tempt some Republicans to act now to fill the vacancy on the Supreme Court” said AUL’s Clarke Forsythe.

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WASHINGTON, D.C. (03-16-16) – Americans United for Life Senior Counsel and Acting President Clarke Forsythe called on the U.S. Senate to stand firm in its resolve to wait until after the election to fill the Supreme Court vacancy left by Justice Antonin Scalia following the announcement of President Obama’s nomination of Judge Merrick Garland, Chief Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. “Judge Merrick Garland is President Obama’s pro-abortion pick to tempt some Republicans to act now to fill the vacancy on the Supreme Court. The President’s commitment to unrestricted, unmonitored and taxpayer funded abortion is well known,” said Forsythe. “Pro-life Americans agree with the assessments of President Obama, Vice President Biden and even Sen. Chuck Schumer, all of whom urged the Senate to hold the line against Supreme Court picks late in a president’s term. The voters need to weigh in on the direction of the nation’s most powerful court, and given the reality that the Supreme Court has set it self up as the nation’s ‘Abortion Control Board’ in its sweeping Roe v. Wade decision, it is time let the people have a voice.”

Consider that Judge Garland spoke at a gathering celebrating Linda Greenhouse’s book on Justice Harry Blackmun, Becoming Justice Blackmun. He described the release of the papers of the late Justice Blackmun—the author of one of the Supreme Court’s worst decisions, Roe v. Wade—as a “great gift to the country.”

“Americans United for Life looks forward to assisting the Senate leadership in evaluating prospective nominees when the time is right,” Forsythe said. As the nation’s oldest, national pro-life organization, AUL has been recognized four times by members of the Senate Judiciary Committee when AUL was asked to address pro-life concerns in confirmation hearings for Supreme Court nominees.  AUL leaders testified during confirmation hearings for Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Justice Stephen Breyer, Justice Sonia Sotomayor and Justice Elena Kagan.

AUL recently sent a letter to the Senate, urging them to hold the line. To read more click here. Writing in an op-ed for The Hill, which accompanied the letter, Forsythe said: “There are numerous instances where the Senate has rejected presidential nominees to the Supreme Court.  Approximately 31 of 160 Supreme Court nominees have been rejected.  (Henry Hogue did a detailed analysis for the Congressional Research Service in 2010.) A list of some relatively recent ones (listing president-nominee) include: Hoover-Parker (1930), Johnson-Fortas (1968), Nixon-Haynsworth (1969), Nixon-Carswell (1970), and Reagan-Bork (1987).”

And contrary to partisan advocates who say that nine justices are required for the work of the court, Forsythe observed, “There’s no magic to the number nine.  The number of Justices is not set by the Constitution, but by statute.  The number of justices, for example, fluctuated between 1866 and1871.  Congress reduced the number of Justices in 1866, then increased the number to ten, before reducing the number to nine in 1871, where it has remained.”

In addition to calling on the Senate to hold the line, AUL is also engaged in building grassroots support in a national petition urging the Senate to wait until after the election to confirm a replacement for Scalia. To view or sign the petition, click here.

To learn more about the dangers of abortion for women, click here.