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Bolton: ‘Brilliant Lawyer’ Cruz Will Make Scalia Replacement and Constitution an Issue

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On the Fox News Channel on Sunday, former UN Ambassador John Bolton argued that Republican presidential candidate Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) will make Antonin Scalia’s replacement an issue, as will Hillary Clinton, something he views as a positive development

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Bolton, who called Scalia to inform him he was confirmed, said that when he told Scalia the Senate had confirmed him 98-0, “[T]here was sort of a silence at the other end, and he said, ‘Who were the two who didn’t vote?'” And that Scalia laughed at the irony that Barry Goldwater and Jake Garn, two conservative senators were the only two who didn’t support his confirmation.

Bolton added that Scalia “is just about the last of the really visible, articulate, clearly conservative justices ever to get through the Senate.” He later characterized Scalia as an “intellectual giant.”

Bolton further stated that originalism is conservative, “It is a way of analyzing the Constitution and that says those who wrote a particular clause, and those who ratified it, had something in mind when they agreed to put it in the Constitution. And it’s that understanding that has to govern how the justices and lower court judges decide.”

He further predicted that Scalia’s death would “have a profound impact on the presidential election, as it should. I’m willing to be my dollar right now that nobody gets confirmed this year.”

Bolton concluded, “I think it’s certainly going to be an issue in the general election. I think debating first principles is what elections should be about. I think somebody like Ted Cruz on the Republican side, a brilliant lawyer himself, obviously head and shoulders above the others, will make it an issue. Hillary Clinton a lawyer on her side, will be perfectly prepared to make it an issue as will. And I think that’s good. There’s nothing more important than the Constitution to debate.”

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