CNN anchor Ashleigh Banfield on Wednesday praised President Barack Obama’s Supreme Court nominee Merrick Garland and at one point even called the judge “perfect.”
Banfield noted Garland’s move earlier in his career to leave a position at a prestigious law firm in Washington, D.C., in favor of becoming a junior prosecutor at the Justice Department.
“A lot of people point to that move as something that proves that he is absolutely a public servant first,” Banfield said to her guest, former Justice Department lawyer Amy Jeffress, who once worked with Garland.
“Do you think this is a move that it will at least show anybody who is against him is against a guy who is, like, perfect?” Banfield asked. Jeffress laughed, before going on to agree with the anchor.
“He is perfect. He really is perfect for the court,” Jeffress responded.
“From a lawyer’s perspective, he is absolutely an outstanding nominee, and I think that came through in the ceremony this morning,” Jeffress said earlier in the segment. “He is eminently qualified to serve on the court, and I don’t think anyone would argue with his qualifications.”
Republicans, who may quibble with Garland’s qualifications, are pointing out that their real objection stems from the idea of a U.S. president in his last year of office nominating a Supreme Court justice for a life term during an election year.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said it’s possible the American people will elect a president in November who will nominate Garland but noted that there is a chance of the next president putting forth a nominee who is much different.
“Either way, our view is this: give the people a voice in filling this vacancy,” McConnell said.
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