President Obama took to the airwaves Monday to pressure six Republican senators in their home states over his Supreme Court nominee, amid signs that Democrats are shifting their focus to winning control of the Senate in November rather than filling the high court vacancy.
Mr. Obama conducted interviews at the White House with TV stations from Arizona, Iowa, Missouri, New Hampshire, Ohio and Wisconsin — all states with incumbent Republican senators running for re-election. Ostensibly, the president’s media blitz was aimed at forcing the Senate Republican leadership to schedule a confirmation hearing and vote on Judge Merrick Garland, who has been waiting seven weeks for action.
Meanwhile a government watchdog group, the Foundation for Accountability and Civic Trust, asked Judge Garland to authorize the release of his office of professional responsibility records from his tenure at the Justice Department during the Clinton administration.
In his letter to Judge Garland, foundation director Matthew G. Whitaker said Americans “need to know whether any such records exist and to examine existing records in order to evaluate your qualifications to serve as a Supreme Court Justice.”