What Senate Republicans have said about election-year Supreme Court vacancies

Sen. Thom Tillis (R-N.C.)

Late in 2016, Tillis wrote an op-ed defending the GOP’s decision to refuse a hearing for Garland, saying “voters — not a lame-duck president — should decide the composition of the highest court in the land.”

Tillis is running for reelection against Democrat Cal Cunningham in North Carolina, which along with Florida is among the closest battleground states up for grabs in 2020.

Sen. Cory Gardner (R-Colo.)

Gardner, who faces a tough reelection battle in a state Hillary Clinton won in 2016, defended the GOP’s decision to deny Garland a hearing.

“The next president of the United States should have the opportunity to fill the vacancy on the Supreme Court,” Gardner said at the time. “In 1992, even then-Senator Joe Biden stated the Senate should not hold confirmation hearings for a Supreme Court nominee until after that year’s presidential election. Our next election is too soon and the stakes are too high; the American people deserve a role in this process as the next Supreme Court Justice will influence the direction of this country for years to come.”