Republican U.S. Senate candidate Kathy Szeliga said in a statement Wednesday that she believes the Senate Judiciary Committee should vote on President Barack Obama's Supreme Court nominee, Merrick Garland.
“A Supreme Court nominee should be given a fair hearing and should either be approved or rejected based on their merits. An automatic rubber stamp of yes or no based on your political allegiance is not good governing,” Szeliga wrote in a nearly 500-word message sent to supporters.
Last week, when asked by The Frederick News-Post whether Garland's nomination should receive a vote before November, Szeliga issued a written statement noting partisan gridlock in Washington, but didn't go so far as to call for a vote.
Szeliga is a Baltimore County state delegate running against U.S. Rep Chris Van Hollen, D-8th, for the seat currently held by U.S. Sen. Barbara Mikulski, who is retiring.
Mikulski met last week with Garland and said she would reach an independent decision about Garland's nomination.
Van Hollen has said Garland is “widely respected” and refusing to hold a vote is a “total abdication of the Senate's constitutional responsibilities.”
Senate Republicans, who hold a majority in the chamber, have so far refused to consider Garland's nomination.
Szeliga and Van Hollen will be on the general election ballot Nov. 8, along with six other candidates who are from the Green and Libertarian parties or are unaffiliated.