With the 2016 presidential election underway, politics are dominating the news. Candidates are trying to gain their place in the White House as they argue about which direction the United States should go and their plans to make the county a better place.
With the election comes more political drama. Republicans and Democrats are fighting to place a new supreme court justice on the stand following the death of Justice Antonin Scalia.
The Republicans want the next president to appoint the new justice while the Democrats want to continue with the traditional appointment process.
According to the Constitution, the current president has a duty to nominate a justice and the Senate should give that justice both a fair and timely examination and vote to confirm whether they will serve on the bench.
The Republicans currently control the Senate and are threatening to filibuster until the next president is in office. When the Republicans threaten to not fulfill their duties, it interrupts how the Supreme Court operates.
The split court of four conservative justices and four liberal justices could create a 4-4 deadlock and keep the Supreme Court from accomplishing anything until a ninth justice is put back on the bench.
The longest wait for the Senate to confirm a justice was 125 days.
Eleven months are left in the current presidential term, and there is no reason why President Obama should not be able to appoint a new justice with his remaining time, as long as the Republican party cooperates with the appointment process.
This is not a lesson on who would do a better job but on what is right. Not allowing President Obama and the Democratic Party to nominate a new justice would set a precedent for the years to come.
If a president cannot make appointments in his final year of office, nothing stops a president from not making appointments in their final two years of office and so forth.
The Republican Party is not guaranteed to win the presidential election. If the Republicans were in control of the executive branch they would want to appoint the new justice in the final year of office just as the Constitution requires.
Continuing with the appointment process and letting the Senate fulfill its duties would be what is best for the country and what is constitutionally right.
Not fulfilling these duties could cause problems in the Supreme Court for the next 11 months and set a precedent that is sure to cause problems in the future.