Sen. Mark Kirk (R-IL) says President Obama should nominate and the Senate should consider a replacement to fill the Supreme Court vacancy left by the death of Justice Antonin Scalia.
In an op-ed published Monday at the Chicago Sun-Times, Kirk — a moderate Republican facing reelection in a blue state — broke from many of his Republican colleagues who say the Senate should not consider a nomination to the high court in an election year.
“I recognize the right of the president, be it Republican or Democrat, to place before the Senate a nominee for the Supreme Court and I fully expect and look forward to President Barack Obama advancing a nominee for the Senate to consider,” Kirk wrote.
“I also recognize my duty as a senator to either vote in support or opposition to that nominee following a fair and thorough hearing along with a complete and transparent release of all requested information,” he continued.
According to the Illinois lawmaker, Obama should seek a nominee who is not extreme and can help create unity.
“My sincerest hope is that President Obama nominates someone who captures the sentiment he spoke about before the Illinois General Assembly this month — a nominee who can bridge differences, a nominee who finds common ground and a nominee who does not speak or act in the extreme,” Kirk added.
Scalia died earlier this month at a ranch in Texas. His funeral was Saturday.