PITTSBURGH (NewsRadio1020 KDKA) – Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia’s sudden death over the weekend at a Texas resort has thrown the current state of politics into a bit of a frenzy.
Presidential hopefuls have been speaking out on their views of who should appoint the next Supreme Court Justice.
Republican’s say the next president should choose the nominee while Democrats say it’s the current President’s constitutional responsibility to appoint a new nominee.
The question the KDKA Afternoon News is asking – How does this change the current cases the Supreme Court is hearing?
There are some pretty colossal cases before the Supreme Court. Cases dealing with the legality of abortion, one person one vote, immigration, Obamacare and even churches paying for employee’s birth control now possibly up for a different ruling.
Mangino and Shelley decided to go to an expert, a former U.S. Attorney, current law professor at Duquesne and St. Vincent former Attorney General and former Pennsylvania Governor, Tom Corbett.
Corbett says we are in uncharted waters here and the political rhetoric being thrown back and forth won’t change the current cases.
“They may have already voted in all of these cases, opinions are being written but, unless a Supreme Court Justice is alive on the day the opinion is issued, the vote doesn’t count if he is not there,” said Corbett.
President Obama said earlier that he intends to appoint a nominee in due time. Corbett says while yes that is his constitutional right and duty the time line might not match up to accomplish anything during his final term.
“From a practical standpoint, my opinion the fastest they would get somebody on the court would be middle of May beginning of June,” Corbett said, “Court closes down at the end of June or last opinions of the term. The term doesn’t start again until October and they start doing new cases again.”
With that timeline Corbett says he doesn’t think a nominee or new Justice would be able to make that much of a change in the votes this year.
You can hear the whole interview with Governor Tom Corbett here now.
Tune into the KDKA Afternoon News weekdays from 3-7.