Ben Carson (AP/Andrew Harnik)

Ben Carson admits the truth about GOP's Scalia hypocrisy: Republicans would not wait to pick their own SCOTUS replacement

But, Carson argues, GOP hypocrisy is doing America a solid by saving us from another Obama "ideologue"


Sophia Tesfaye
February 17, 2016 1:41AM (UTC)

Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia’s passing this weekend may come to be remembered as the day Republicans officially gave up any veneer of respectability and threw out even the slightest modicum of decorum in their blisteringly fast rush to politicize the conservative jurists' replacement process.

Hours after Scalia's death was announced, Ben Carson joined with fellow Republican presidential candidates Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio in calling on Congress to block the Supreme Court vacancy from being filled.

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"It is imperative that the Senate not allow President Obama to diminish his legacy by trying to nominate an individual who would carry on his wishes to subvert the will of the People," Carson wrote in a statement, before even expressing his condolences for Scalia's family.

During Saturday's Republican debate in South Carolina, every single candidate indicated that they preferred that the highest court in the nation not be fully staffed rather than allow President Obama, who still has a year left in his term, to fulfill his constitutional obligation.

Asked if Carson and his cohort were perhaps being hypocritical their opposition to Obama naming Scalia's replacement, Carson was remarkably honest about what animates the Republicans' rush to fight. "Do you think the same six people on stage would say the same thing if there were a Republican president in the White House right now -- for them to wait until the next president is selected?" a South Carolina radio host asked Carson on Tuesday.

Without skipping a beat, Carson replied openly: "No, they wouldn’t."

But Republican obstruction and hypocrisy are appropriate in this instance, Carson explained, because "the two picks that the president has selected are ideologues. So there’s really no reason to believe that his next pick wouldn’t be an ideologue also."

Carson went on to argue that the nation's highest court has become a "political tool" and suggested lifetime appointments be reexamined.

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Listen to Carson letting the truth on GOP hypocrisy and obstruction slip, via Buzzfeed:


Sophia Tesfaye

Sophia Tesfaye is Salon's Deputy Politics Editor and resides in Washington, D.C. You can find her on Twitter at @SophiaTesfaye.

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