President Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden faced off in the first presidential debate on Tuesday night, and moderator Chris Wallace opened up the much-anticipated debate with a contentious question on the Supreme Court.
On the question of filling a Supreme Court vacancy during an election year, just days after President Trump nominated Judge Amy Coney Barrett to fill the seat vacated by former Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the former vice president said that Americans “have a right” to have a say in who fills the open seat.
Biden unintentionally argued for Senate Republicans to fill the seat; indeed, Americans deserve to have a say in which jurists sit on the Supreme Court. In 2016, voters elected President Trump and a Republican majority in the Senate, and in the 2018 midterm elections, Americans expanded the GOP’s majority.
‘14 - GOP flips Senate— Jesse Hunt (@JJHunt10) September 30, 2020
‘16 - GOP flips WH, holds Senate
‘18 - GOP expands Senate majority
Voters decided and gave GOP constitutional authority to nominate and fill SCOTUS seat
“The American people deserve to have a say on the Supreme Court”— Matt Whitlock (@mattdizwhitlock) September 30, 2020
What does he think 2018 midterms were?
President Trump spotlighted this reality, reminding Biden that “elections have consequences.”
While he now advocates for the vacant seat to be left open until after the general election, Biden fiercely argued for the seat of former Justice Antonin Scalia in 2016, at the end of former President Obama’s second term in office and with a Republican majority in the Senate.
Follow our coverage of the first presidential debate here.