Maddow: Jeh Johnson Possible Replacement For Scalia, Could Get Through GOP Senate


Reacting to the death of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, aged 79, MSNBC anchor Rachel Maddow said people making predictions of how President Obama will handle the vacancy will be "embarrassed."

"This is kind of as big a jolt as we can get," Maddow said about Scalia's death and the vacancy left behind. "I think anybody who's going to predict exactly what's going to happen here is going to be embarrassed by those predictions just within the next few weeks."

Maddow came up with an interesting scenario where President Obama would nominate someone who "effectively has already been vetted," such as a cabinet level official. Maddow suggested the "very reserved and non-ideological" Secretary of Homeland Secretary Jeh Johnson.

"If I had to throw one scenario into the mix, this might be the kind of time when the president would choose a nominee who effectively has already been vetted, somebody who can kind of jump the line in terms of the United States Senate, somebody who has recently been through a rigorous confirmation process, somebody who, for example, is a cabinet level official in the Obama administration already," Maddow proposed.

"The first person who springs to mind for that kind of a scenario is Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson, who is a very reserved and non-ideological person but has served in several administrations as a top Pentagon lawyer, as a very trusted national security expert and legal mind and is now running the biggest agency in the government outside of the Pentagon or the Veterans Affairs department," Maddow suggested.

"Somebody like that could conceivably be so non-objectionable to the United States Senate that maybe they would allow that sort of confirmation process to go ahead, even when another judicial nominee, who might more typically be on the short list would get held up by this Republican Senate trying to hold out for the hope of a Republican president to pick a nominee," Maddow also said.

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