Senate Republicans took a big gamble on the Supreme Court this year when they shut down President Barack Obama’s effort to fill a vacancy created by the February death of Justice Antonin Scalia.
Now that bet is about to pay off, with Republican victories in Tuesday’s presidential and Senate races all but ensuring the court’s rightward tilt will resume for years, if not decades, ahead.
“I said in February of this year, to a hail of controversy, that I thought it best if the American people decided this appointment,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R., Ky.) told reporters Wednesday. “The American people have spoken and President Trump will send us a nominee, I assume, early next year.”
Mr. McConnell drew the line against an Obama appointment within hours of Justice Scalia’s death and held his caucus together despite pushback from the Obama administration, Democrats and legal figures, including some conservatives.
President-elect Donald Trump supported Mr. McConnell’s move, and made filling the vacancy with an appointee “in the mold of Justice Scalia” a campaign pledge. Not a lawyer himself, Mr. Trump turned to the conservative legal establishment to develop a list of potential appointees.
This article continues at [Wall Street Journal] Donald Trump Poised to Tilt Supreme Court