Justice Scalia dead at 79

Herb Boyd | 2/18/2016, 10:15 a.m.
President Obama scolded for his plans to nominate a successor following the death of the highly conservative Supreme Court Associate ...
Associate Justice Antonin G. Scalia portrait U.S. Supreme Court

Sanders said, fervently disagreeing with McConnell, “I just don’t think it looks good that for very, overtly political reasons, the Republicans would deny this president the right to exercise his constitutional responsibility ... I don’t think the public will look kindly on Republican efforts to try to thwart what he is supposed to be able to do.”

It’s debatable how much time the president has to select someone during this election season, which in recent memory happened for Justice Anthony Kennedy in 1988. He is now the most senior member of the court.

Already a short list of possible candidates has cropped up, including California Attorney General Kamala Harris, an African-Asian-American, Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey and Indian-American Padmanabhan Srikanth “Sri” Srinivasan, a United States Circuit Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. The last would probably have the best chance of getting Senate approval because he was, to some degree, vetted when he received a vote of 97-0 for his current position.

Another question many are posing is what happens to Justice Clarence Thomas now that his leader is gone? Perhaps he’ll attach himself to Justice Alito or continue to be “Silent Thomas.”