Sen. Doug Jones Says He Will Not Support Supreme Court Nominee Before Election

September 25, 2020 Updated: September 25, 2020

Sen. Doug Jones (D-Ala.), considered one of the most vulnerable senators, said he will not support a Supreme Court nominee before the election.

“I regret that I will not support the confirmation of any Supreme Court justice nominee, regardless of who it might be … before the outcome of the Nov. 3 election has been determined,” Jones stated in a Facebook Live event.

Jones previously said that he might be willing to support President Donald Trump’s nominee before November.

He will face off against Trump-backed GOP candidate Tommy Tuberville.

Jones won the Senate seat in 2017 in a special election, filling former Sen. Jeff Sessions’s (R-Ala.) seat. Jones was the first Democrat to represent Alabama in the upper chamber in decades.

In that election, Jones defeated Republican Alabama Supreme Court Judge Roy Moore in December after women alleged that Moore was engaged in sexual misconduct.

Tuberville took the opportunity to criticize Jones over his decision.

“President @realDonaldTrump previously released a list of proven conservatives he would consider for the court,” Tuberville wrote on Twitter. “And I can guarantee that Doug Jones opposes every one of them, including the female candidates and the two Alabamians, Bill Pryor and Kevin Newsome.”

Meanwhile, Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.), considered another moderate Democrat, said he also will not support nominating anyone before the November election.

Among Republicans, Sens. Susan Collins (R-Maine) and Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), both said they want to wait until after the election is over before a Supreme Court nomination is held.

However, Murkowski later loosened her stance and said she would not rule out voting to confirm the president’s nominee.

“I know everybody wants to ask the question, ‘Will you confirm the nominee?’” she told reporters near the Capitol. “We don’t have a nominee yet. You and I don’t know who that is. And so I can’t confirm whether or not I can confirm a nominee when I don’t know who the nominee is.”

Last week, Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg died at age 87 after a bout with cancer. Trump said he will nominate a new Supreme Court justice on Saturday at 5 p.m.

“Sadly, what was then a hypothetical is now our reality, but my position has not changed,” Murkowski also said. “I did not support taking up a nomination eight months before the 2016 election to fill the vacancy created by the passing of Justice Scalia.”

Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) this week announced he will vote in favor of Trump’s pick, giving Republicans a slight edge.