DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA — The following information was submitted to St. George News from the office of Utah Sen. Orrin Hatch.
Fact: The Senate is doing its job under the Constitution by acting to defend the integrity of the Supreme Court.
The Constitution gives the Senate authority to check the president’s power in the appointment process. While the Constitution gives the president formal authority to nominate a Supreme Court candidate, the Senate has the right to refuse its consent to any nominee.
- In Article II, Section 2 of the Constitution, there are two relevant points: The first gives the president authority to nominate judges, and the second gives the Senate the responsibility to advise and give or withhold consent—a crucial check against the president’s appointment power.
- The advice and consent role is not a ceremonial function but a deliberate and essential component of the Constitution’s system of checks and balances.
- The Constitution does not specify a time frame for this process; instead, it leaves to the Senate’s discretion the choice of when and how it will carry out the advice and consent function.
- Elections have consequences. In 2014, the American people elected a Republican Senate majority as a check against President Obama’s executive overreach.