Nevada Gov. Sandoval Bows Out of Supreme Court Consideration



Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval, R, announced Thursday he was withdrawing his name from consideration as a possible Supreme Court nominee, just one day after it became public the White House was weighing whether to select him.

“Earlier today, I notified the White House that I do not wish to be considered at this time for possible nomination to the Supreme Court of the United States,” Sandoval said in a brief statement.”

On Monday, Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., met with Sandoval, a moderate who expanded Medicaid in his state and raised taxes to fund education efforts, to discuss whether he would be interested in filling the vacancy left by the sudden death of Justice Antonin Scalia. While the White House had considered the prospect of naming Sandoval, Senate Republicans declared Wednesday they would not hold a hearing even if he was nominated because they believe the next president should have the right to fill the seat on the Court.

Sandoval added he had spoken to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., as well as Reid and Sen. Dean Heller, R-Nev., whom the governor initially appointed to the Senate, before making his announcement.

“I have also spoken to Senators Reid, Heller and McConnell and expressed the same desire to them,” Sandoval said. “The notion of being considered for a seat on the highest court in the land is beyond humbling and I am incredibly grateful to have been mentioned.”

Asked about the governor’s decision Thursday afternoon, White House press secretary Josh Earnest declined to comment about the ongoing selection process.

“Even after the fact I’m not going to get into a lot of details about who is on the president’s list and who is not,” he said. “In part, that’s because the list is not final.”

(C) 2016, The Washington Post · Juliet Eilperin 



  1. President Obama will be president for almost the next eleven months and he has every right to nominate Supreme Court Justices. If he was a lame duck after losing a reelection bid then possibly the case could be made that “the American People” don’t approve of him or his choices and he shouldn’t force his nominee down our throats, but that’s clearly not the case here.
    Is the fact that he has less than a year remaining in office a reason not to allow him to choose who’s nominated? What about if he had a full year left? or eighteen months? or two years? This is a baloney argument with no clear, logical cutoff point as to when a nomination shouldn’t proceed. Furthermore, a seated Supreme Court judge will in all likelihood be making rulings far beyond the end of the administration under which he was appointed anyway, even if he’s nominated in year one of a two-term presidency – just look at Scalia’s nearly thirty years on the court.
    The one valid argument for a filibuster (IMO) is if a president whose party controls the Senate attempts to ram his choice through as basically a one-party selection, the case can be made that the only option open to the minority party is to filibuster. This isn’t the case here, however – the Republicans control the Senate!
    By now some of you may be thinking that this is the screed of a hard-core Obama-loving left-winger (wow – three consecutive hyphenations). Well, no. I was a fan of Scalia’s conservatism, brilliance and articulacy and I regret that his replacement will probably fall short of him in all of those aspects. I am sick and tired of death matches these SCOTUS selection processes have become. I’ll also stipulate the brazen hypocrisy of both Obama and V.P. Biden in piously appealing to our nobler instincts and allowing the nomination to proceed while they themselves employed a scorched-earth strategy when the shoe was on the other foot.
    When all is said and done the Republicans have the power to simply vote “No” in a full Senate vote if Obama selects someone who’s ideologically (or otherwise) unsuitable. They should let President Obama nominate who he will and then vote “yes” or “no” based on his merits.

    • “They should let President Obama nominate who he will and then vote “yes” or “no” based on his merits.”

      The problem is once the process gets started, it snowballs