A new national poll shows Americans would like the Senate to move “as quickly as possible” on a replacement for retiring Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy.
Rasmussen Reports said its survey of 1,000 likely voters conducted July 1-2 found that 51 percent want the vote to take place before the new Senate takes office in January and 40 percent disagree.
The pollster said the result is comparable to attitudes in February 2016 following the sudden death of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia.
At that time, 51 percent said President Obama should replace Scalia right away, but 43 percent said the choice should be left to the new president elected in November.
Republicans ignored Obama’s nominee and delayed the vote until the 2017 Senate session when it approved Trump’s nominee, Judge Neil Gorsuch, for the Scalia seat.
Trump scheduled the announcement of his nominee for Monday night, and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has promised a confirmation vote in the fall.
Democrats want the Republicans to not vote until after the November election because they want to see if they can gain the majority.
“Eighty-seven percent of all voters rate the selection of a new Supreme Court as important to their vote in November, with 63 percent who say it is Very Important. Just 12 percent say it’s not very or Not At All Important,” the report said.
“This is even more importance than voters attached to the selection of a new high court justice as they weighed their vote in the 2016 presidential election.”
The report also noted that the Supreme Court — which recently affirmed freedom of speech in saying pro-life crisis pregnancy centers cannot be forced to promote abortion and freedom of religion in a decision on behalf of Masterpiece Cakeshop owner Jack Phillips in the same-sex marriage fight — now is earning its highest approval ratings in several years.