Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is planning on suggesting Judge Merrick Garland be selected as Trump’s next FBI Director.
Politico’s John Holmes said on Fox News Sunday that Barack Obama’s (failed) choice to replace Antonin Scalia on the US Supreme Court is the top choice of the Senate’s top Republican.
He’s not the first senator to make the suggestion. During a White House meeting Wednesday, Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah) made the same recommendation, ABC is reporting.
A White House spokesman said Lee raised the possibility of Garland as a replacement for the recently fired FBI Director James Comey with President Donald Trump’s staff. Lee’s proposal was not made directly to the president though, the spokesman said.
“I think it has some advantages to it because … this is someone who has a lot of bona fides as a prosecutor,” said Lee on Fox News Thursday morning. “He has been one who has got allies as a potential director nominee in both political parties.”
Garland, the chief judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, was nominated to the U.S. Supreme Court by President Barack Obama in March 2016 after the death of Associate Justice Antonin Scalia.
When Senate Republicans refused to schedule a hearing on Garland, his nomination expired and President Donald Trump chose Judge Neil Gorsuch for the seat.
Other than an attempt at bipartisanship, there might be another motive for the move. Nominating Garland would open up the seat on the powerful D.C. Circuit Court and provide Trump the opportunity to appoint his own judge for the lifetime seat.
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) endorsed the idea. “I like that. I think he’s a good guy,” he said.