Update: 6:01 p.m.: The State Senate put off a vote Thursday that would call on the U.S. Senate to consider a U.S. Supreme Court nomination to replace the late Justice Antonin Scalia.
The resolution from Sen. Ken Donnelly of Arlington blames partisan politics for leaving the Supreme Court with an even number of justices and asks Senate leaders on Capitol Hill to give a hearing to whomever President Obama nominates to the high court.
The state Senate’s top Republican, Sen. Bruce Tarr, opposed the motion and listed what he said were much more important local issues facing his colleagues.
"License suspension, opiates, energy, and yet we have so much more work to do," Tarr said. "And yet this resolution would invite us to shift our focus to national politics."
It's unlikely U.S. Senate Republicans are waiting with bated breathe to hear from Massachusetts' Democrat-dominated Legislature.
The Massachusetts Senate tabled the resolution until their next formal session.
— — —
Original story: The state Senate is scheduled to take up a resolution later Thursday that would call on the U.S. Senate to move along with the nomination process of a U.S. Supreme Court Justice to replace the late Justice Antonin Scalia.
The resolution from Sen. Ken Donnelly of Arlington, asks Senate leadership in Washington to give a hearing to whoever President Barack Obama nominates for the seat.
"Failing to timely nominate, consider and confirm the next justice for partisan political reason would undermine the plain meaning and intent of the constitution and be a profound disservice to the American people," the text of the resolution reads.
U.S. Senate Republicans on Tuesday stated their commitment against taking up any nominee Obama puts before them.
"I can now confidently say the view shared by virtually everybody in my conference, is that the nomination should be made by the president the people elect in the election that's underway right now," Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., told reporters tuesday at the Capitol.
The resolution says the people of Massachusetts deserve a fully functioning U.S. Supreme Court. The Senate Clerk's office confirmed that the resolution is on the Senate's calendar for their formal session Thursday afternoon.
Donnelly's legislation would cause the Senate to "respectfully urge" the U.S. Senate to grant "a fair hearing and a timely vote to the president's next nominee to the Supreme Court," and states several cases when a president has had a nomination heard during an election year.