Illinois politicians respond to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s Supreme Court comments

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WASHINGTON, D.C. — Illinois lawmakers and both sides of the aisle are weighing in on Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s change of tune when it comes to filling potential Supreme Court vacancies.​​​​​​

Tuesday, McConnell said if a Supreme Court vacancy occurs during next year’s presidential election, he would work to confirm a nominee appointed by President Donald Trump. The hypothetical question arose during a Paducah Chamber of Commerce luncheon in Kentucky.

His response is in sharp contrast to his decision to block President Barack Obama’s nominee to the high court following the February 2016 death of Justice Antonin Scalia.

At the time, McConnell said filling a seat on the Supreme Court should wait until after the presidential election so the newly elected president could select a nominee. 

Central Illinois lawmakers on Wednesday said they will wait and see what happens. 

“If and when there’s an opening, depending on when that occurs, we’ll assess that when that happens,” U.S. Rep Darin LaHood (R-Ill.) said. 

U.S. Rep. Cheri Bustos (D-Ill.) had similar sentiments.

“Well considering there’s not a vacancy on the supreme court now I think it’s all hypothetical,” she said. “The future will hold out and we’ll see what happens.” 

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer responded to McConnell’s comments in a tweet, calling him “a hypocrite.” 

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