President Obama spoke today with local reporters from around the country about the stalled Supreme Court nomination of his Supreme Court nominee, Merrick Garland. As America Rising Squared (AR2) reports, the president got several facts wrong (which, says AR2, has become the new normal for this Administration).
Obama told reporters that “in the past, [Garland] has been confirmed unanimously by the Senate for the current position that he holds.” Not so. In 1997, 23 Senators voted against his nomination to the D.C. Circuit. Among them were current Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and current Judiciary Committee Chairman Charles Grassley.
Obama went on to criticize Republicans for citing the fact that this an election year as grounds for not holding a hearing or a vote on the Garland nomination. With feigned incredulity, he asked “where’d that rule come from?”
It comes from Obama’s vice president, Joe Biden. In 1992 as Judiciary Chairman, Talkin’ Joe stated on the Senate floor that a President should not even nominate a Supreme Court justice in an election year.
Earlier this year, Biden tried to talk his way around the fact that the position he takes regarding the Garland nomination contradicts the position he took in 1992. Jonathan Adler and Ed Whelan have dismantled Biden’s argument.
But at least Biden recognized that there is a “rule” he needs to distinguish. Obama pretends that there isn’t, and he flat out misstates what occurred in the Senate when Garland was nominated for an appeals court judgeship.
It’s not that Obama can’t get his facts straight; it’s that he doesn’t care to. And given the largely free ride he receives from the mainstream media, he has little incentive to care.