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Trump Wants To Fill Supreme Court Vacant Seat "Without Delay", McConnell Vows Senate Vote; Ginsburg: My Most Fervent Wish Is That I Will Not Be Replaced Until A New President Is Installed; U.S. Approaching Grim Milestone Of 200,000 COVID-19 Deaths; Trump On Supreme Court Nominee: It Will Be A Woman. Aired 7-8a ET

Aired September 20, 2020 - 07:00   ET


ANNOUNCER: This is NEW DAY weekend with Victor Blackwell and Christi Paul.


VICTOR BLACKWELL, CNN ANCHOR: Miami, you're beautiful. At 7:00 a.m. on a Saturday. Any time of the year. South Florida, WPLG, thank you for the shot.

Good morning to you.

And now, the focus turns to the Senate with all eyes looking at the balance of power on the Supreme Court. The country is mourning, of course, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Already her death impacting 2020 politics.

CHRISTI PAUL, CNN ANCHOR: Yeah, for a second day, there were people who were at the steps of the high court to remember the liberal icon hanging over the tributes, though to this incredible life of hers. This intense debate that's happening across the street on Capitol Hill. Who should get to choose her successor? And when should that vote happen?

BLACKWELL: So far, at least one senator, Susan Collins, she's talking about what she will support and what she will not support. At least she's saying that she says -- she does not believe the Senate should vote before the election. She doesn't say that she will not vote.

Republican leaders in the Senate, though, and the president, they say they've got to move now.


DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I totally disagree with her. We have an obligation. We won. We have an obligation as the winners to pick who we want.

That's not the next president. Hopefully, I'll be the next president. But we're here now, right now, we're here.


BLACKWELL: CNN's Kaitlan Collins is at the White House.

Kaitlan, good morning to you.

The president last night got huge cheers when he talked about the responsibility the president to name nominees to the Supreme Court. What do we know about his immediate plans to name that person and anything he's telling us about potentially who that will be?

KAITLAN COLLINS, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Well, he does say it is going to be a woman that he is going to nominate for the next Supreme Court pick. Of course, the question is still, which woman is the president going to pick? Because there are several on his list.

And two names he brought up with the Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell when he spoke with him on Friday about this vacancy now that Ruth Bader Ginsburg has sadly passed away. And two of the names are Amy Coney Barrett and Barbara Lagoa, who was from Florida, and currently on the 11th circuit in Atlanta. So, those are two names that the president himself has brought up. But, of course, they're still going through this.

And it's not clear that they've made any final picks yet, but the president does say that that pick could come as soon as this week. Now, just because he picked someone does not mean we're anywhere near close to a confirmation. That is going to be an entirely separate battle that's started playing out in Washington.

And yesterday, as the president was speaking in North Carolina, he completely rejected the idea that he should wait until after the election. An idea that you just said that Susan Collins is someone who referencing. You can see how he is using this as a re-election pitch.


TRUMP: So Article 2 of our Constitution says the president shall nominate justices of the Supreme Court. Now, it says the president is supposed to fill the seat, right? That's what we're going to do. We're going to fill the seat.


COLLINS: So he says there, clearly what his intentions are going to be, where they're going next.

Now, of course, the big question is still going to be who they are going to pick. And what's -- to really give you an indication of how they're looking at this, they had been looking at who they would choose to replace RBG or whatever vacancy came out of the Supreme Court if it happens. These are interviews that the president has been having since earlier spring. It has been a conversation that is already ongoing inside the White House. But what has changed is it's been sped up.

And so, the president has often said he believes the reason that there was a Supreme Court vacancy in 2016 is what helped him get elected from voters, and conservative voters who typically wouldn't have voted for Donald Trump. And so, they're going to try to use that again this time around with the president not only wanting to cement his legacy on the court but he's hoping by picking a woman, it is going to make up for the deficiency in support that he has with suburban women voters.

So, of course, a lot remains to be seen. But so far, we do know it will be a woman and the president says we could get that name as soon as this week.

PAUL: And it is going to change the trajectory of all the conversations we're having about what will happen in 45 days.

Kaitlan Collins, good to have you with us this weekend. Thank you so much.

BLACKWELL: Let's focus in on that conversation, the debate that's happening on Capitol Hill. Democrats say the GOP, they're hypocrites, looking at 2016 and Merrick Garland, and they say, the Democrats are saying, that nothing is off the table in how they may respond.

PAUL: Now, Republicans have to determine if they have enough votes to move quickly here, knowing there are implications for their own political future.

CNN's Manu Raju walks us through that.


SEN. MITCH MCCONNELL (R-KY), MAJORITY LEADER: This decision ought to be made by the next president.

MANU RAJU, CNN SENIOR CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): That was Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell then, when Barack Obama was president in 2016 with a vacancy on the Supreme Court.

But times have changed and so has the president.


MCCONNELL: Oh, we'll fill it.

RAJU: The Republican leaders are plotting a full-throated effort to fill Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg's seat with the election just 44 days away, trying to make the argument it's different now because Republicans control both the White House and the Senate.

Privately, McConnell and Trump speaking about potential nominees on Friday night, and the GOP leader in the message to his colleagues urging them to keep your powder dry and not take a position on whether the winner of the November election should be the one filling the vacancy left by the death of Ginsburg.

On Saturday, Senator Susan Collins of Maine, facing the toughest re- election of her career, breaking ranks, saying the decision of a lifetime appointment to the Supreme Court should be made by the president who is elected on November 3rd. But with a 53-47 majority, Democrats needed a total of four Republicans to vote no and stop the nomination.

GOP Senator Lisa Murkowski, before Ginsburg's death, made clear she did not want to move ahead on any vacancy before November. And it's unclear if two other Republicans will agree.

Privately, top Republicans are arguing that a Supreme Court fight will only boost their chances at holding the Senate majority in November. And several Republicans in difficult races are indicating they'll vote to confirm Trump's nominee this year. Even though some endangered Republicans like North Carolina Senator Thom Tillis took the opposite position in 2016.

SEN. THOM TILLIS (R-NC): We're going to let the American people speak.

RAJU: Yet, moving ahead before November could squeeze Republicans like Cory Gardner running for re-election in Democratic-leaning Colorado. Gardner's office did not respond to questions about whether the winner of the election should make the hugely consequential pick.

It typically takes between two to three months to confirm a Supreme Court nominee, meaning it would be much faster than usual to approve a replacement before November.

Yet, if a vote slipped after the November elections during a lame duck session of Congress, there's another complication that if Arizona's appointed senator, Martha McSally, loses in November. That would mean that Mark Kelly could be sworn in by the end of that month, bringing the GOP majority down to 52-48. So, McConnell has little margin for error, and several senators are uncommitted, like Utah's Mitt Romney and some senators in the past have been wary about an election year confirmation, like Senator Chuck Grassley who as chairman of the Judiciary Committee refused to hold hearings for Obama's nominee in 2016. He told CNN in July --

SEN. CHUCK GRASSLEY (R-IA): If I were chairman of the committee, I couldn't move forward with it.

RAJU: On Saturday, his office declined to say if that is still his position.

Others have clearly shifted theirs, including Lindsey Graham who now chairs the Judiciary Committee and said this in 2016.

SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM (R-SC): Let's let the next president, whoever it might be, make that nomination and you could use my words against me.


RAJU: Now, Lindsey Graham explains himself by saying things have changed in 2018 in the confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh's, that vicious confirmation fight he views the situation differently. But the Republicans do move ahead and succeed at moving ahead, Democrats are warning that they may retaliate, potentially by moving legislation next year if they take the Senate majority to expand the Supreme Court. But to do that, they have to remove changes the filibuster rules, and

that could have dramatic ramifications to the Senate and for millions of people for years to come.

Nevertheless, that's an option on the table. Chuck Schumer yesterday talking to Senate Democrats said that all options are on the table. And that has been reiterated from top Democrats on down. So, Democrats are saying they're not going to take this fight lying down -- Victor and Christi.

BLACKWELL: Thanks, Manu.

Let's bring in CNN Supreme Court reporter Ariane de Vogue.

Ariane, good morning to you.

The president says his nominee will be a woman. Tell us about the potential picks.

ARIANE DE VOGUE, CNN SUPREME COURT REPORTER: Right. The second day after the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, we're feeling the impact of course here after the court and the country as a whole through the election. It's pretty poignant up here this morning, people have been coming, leaving flowers, leaving heartfelt notes.

And, you know, this Supreme Court term starts in October. Already in front of us, we have an important abortion order that has been pending. And we're going to hear big cases like those concerning Obamacare and think long-term, right, down the road. Issues like the Second Amendment, affirmative action, Roe v. Wade. Those are all issues that will be impacted on this.

And that, of course, is coming out in the campaign trail. As you said, President Trump has said he's going to name a woman. On the top of the short list has always been Amy Coney Barrett. She's judge out of the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals. She's a favorite of supporters of religious liberty.

There's another judge called Barbara Lagoa. She hails from Florida. She was the first Cuban-American to be one on Florida Supreme Court.


And, of course, Florida is important to President Bush.

And then there's Allison Rushing. She's on the fourth circuit. She's a little bit on the younger side. But, again, a favorite of the religious right.

And, finally, if White House counsel Pat Cipollone wants to stay within the White House, he's got a lawyer working in the counsel's office, Kate Todd. She's on the list. She's the former clerk to Justice Clarence Thomas.

But as things stand right now, this court has only eight members and keep in mind when the Supreme Court split 4-4, it's left simply affirming what the lower court did. And it sets new precedent, no new precedent. So, there's a lot at stake here.

PAUL: Uh-huh. Ariane de Vogue, we appreciate it so much. Thank you.

DE VOGUE: Thank you.

BLACKWELL: Let's bring in Amy Howe. She is the co-founder of SCOTUSblog.

Amy, good morning to you.

And I want to pick up where we left off. We're a couple weeks before the start of the 2020 term and the absence of Justice Ginsburg on some of the important issues coming, especially health care and how her absence will be felt.

And how that will impact the roles of the other judges?

AMY HOWE, CO-FOUNDER, SCOTUSBLOG: Sure. Remember back in 2012, Chief Justice John Roberts joined the court's four more liberal justices in voting to uphold the individual mandate of the Affordable Care Act.

And so, you know, now, we're looking potentially at an -- either an 8- member court if there is no new Supreme Court justice by the beginning of November. The court is scheduled to hear oral arguments in the case just after Election Day. I think on November 10th, or a court with a new Supreme Court justice, if one is confirmed by then, nominated by the president.

And so, you know, you're looking either at a court that could be divided, depending on how the chief justice votes this time or could vote to strike down the Affordable Care Act, and depending upon -- because they're two issues. One is whether or not the individual mandate is still constitutional and then what should the Supreme Court do should -- if the individual mandate is unconstitutional, does the rest of the Affordable Care Act go as well?

The Supreme Court is also scheduled to hear oral arguments in November in an important case involving the balance between religious beliefs and anti-discrimination laws in a case out of Philadelphia involving Catholic social services, which alleges that the city fills up -- violated its belief, its religious rights when it refused to give referrals for foster care, because Catholic social services won't work with same sex couples.

So, there's already a lot at stake even before you get to the winter holidays.

PAUL: Uh-huh. And when we look at what would happen to the balance of the court, if a conservative is added to it, what does that do to the role of Chief Justice John Roberts? Because he's a swing vote.

HOWE: Right, he was -- has sort of replaced Anthony Kennedy as the justice in the middle of the court. And so, over the last two terms in cases involving the census, DACA, abortion, he was the justice who joined the court's former liberal justices, including Ruth Bader Ginsburg in reaching what conservatives regarded as the liberal result.

And so, that would make his vote significantly -- would push the court to the right if, as expected, the president appoints and the Senate confirms a justice who would be to his right. So it wouldn't matter real he how the chief justice votes if there were five justices to his right to vote for the more conservative position.

And, you know, whoever the president nominates, the judges that Ariane talked about, or 48, 52 and 38. You know, that justice if nominated and confirmed, would be on the court for probably the next three decades.

BLACKWELL: Yeah, we got up on the screen right now a quote according to Justice Ginsburg's granddaughter.

My most fervent wish is that I will not be replaced until a new president is installed.

I also want to play what Justice Ginsburg said back in 2016 during the fight over Merrick Garland.


JUSTICE RUTH BADER GINSBURG, SUPREME COURT OF THE UNITED STATES: The president is elected before you, three years. So, the powers that he has in year three continues into year four and maybe some members of the Senate will wake up and appreciate that that's how it should be.


BLACKWELL: You see a contradiction here?

HOWE: You know, I'm not going to sort of read too much. You know, not going to speak for Justice Ginsburg.


She can speak for herself. She may have seen things differently after the 2016 as I think probably many on the left did.

PAUL: So there are a lot of questions over the years about her decision not to retire, particularly during President Obama's administration. What do you know about -- what kept her there, her reluctance to retire?

HOWE: One of the things she said publicly, certainly, was that she didn't believe because of the makeup of the Senate -- remember, that she was confirmed by a vote of 96-3 back in the early '90s. She didn't believe, because the Senate was so partisan, that the president would be able to get someone essentially as liberal as her nominated and confirmed.

Also, she loved her job. I think she said that she felt she would keep going as long as she could do the job full steam, and she believed that she could. She also I think she loved her job, particularly in the years after her husband died. Again, I don't know what was going on behind the scenes. But, you

know, she may want to not -- have resented other people telling her what to do, particularly many of the critics tell her what to do were men. It's hard to say.

BLACKWELL: Speaking of retirement, before I let you go here, I know last summer, this summer as well, there were op-ed and pieces about the potential that Justice Thomas would retire 30 years on the court, next year. Does this loss for the court and the potential new appointment change that possibility, make it less likely?

HOWE: It's always an interesting question. There have been retirement rumors since President Trump was inaugurated, every summer about Clarence Thomas retiring. He's only 72 which for a Supreme Court justice is basically middle aged. You know, I think that he's probably actually enjoying the job even more these days.

But I do think that there are perhaps that he may watch what's happening now. But again, I think he's probably enjoying the job more and will certainly see what happens -- depending on how the election plays out.

PAUL: All right. Amy Howe, thank you for taking time to be with us this morning.

HOWE: Thanks for having me.

PAUL: Of course.

And be sure to watch "STATE OF THE UNION" later this morning. It's at 9:00 a.m. Eastern. Jake Tapper has a great lineup here. We got former President Bill Clinton. Senator Amy Klobuchar, the vice president's chief of staff, Marc Short, and Admiral Brett Giroir talking about COVID. Again, that's at 9:00 Eastern, right here on CNN.

BLACKWELL: More than a dozen states are seeing record daily cases of COVID-19 as the country gets closer down to 200,000 deaths. We'll talk about which states ahead.



PAUL: Twenty-two minutes past the hour.

And we are close to 200,000 deaths now from the coronavirus here in the U.S. And we're remembering and honoring the people who have died in this pandemic, at least the National Cathedral bell is doing so. It's chiming 200 times. That's happening later today.

BLACKWELL: And there are a dozen of states, we're talking Florida, Georgia, several others that are seeing new daily case records.

CNN's correspondent Natasha Chen is with us now.

I know the answer is probably it varies across the country. But are we understanding from scientists why there are these increases?

NATASHA CHEN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Victor and Christi, there are a few theories on that. This is a slight uptick across every region really in the United States after several weeks of an overall decline. And so, we're looking at possible events that happened over Labor Day weekend. We're also looking at a lot of college campuses where outbreaks caused the schools to have to go all virtual and some even having to cancel football games because of athletes testing positive.


TRUMP: We are getting crowds. And this is pandemic and we're rounding the turn. We're rounding the corner of the pandemic. OK?

CHEN (voice-over): Last night, two very different public gatherings. The vigil at the U.S. Supreme Court with most participants wearing masks, and the president in North Carolina, his crowd largely maskless. This as daily COVID-19 cases in the U.S. have been ticking up recently as the nation's number of lives lost closes in on 200,000.

DR. JONATHAN REINER, CNN MEDICAL ANALYST: Some of this may have come about after the Labor Day weekend. We saw this after a Memorial Day and after July 4th.

Don't forget that colleges are back and we've seen thousands of cases at colleges. Also, kids are going back to school. This is our first experience understanding what happens with community spread when, in some places kids go back for in school. And also, maybe there's some COVID fatigue where people are just letting down their guard.

CHEN: In Florida, health officials reported 3,573 new cases of COVID- 19 Friday, bringing the state's total to 681,233 on Saturday, according to the Florida Department of Health. This marks the most COVID-19 cases reported in a single day since September 11th.

Florida State's football head coach, Mike Norvell, announced that he has tested positive for COVID-19. In a statement sent out on Saturday, Norvell made the announcement saying in our most recent round of COVID testing yesterday, I received a positive result after being negative in the previous two tests this week.


CNN's tally shows the state of Georgia also reported its most new cases in the state since September 3rd.

On Saturday, it reported 2,313 new COVID-19 cases and 63 additional deaths according to the Georgia Department of Public Health.

In Utah, Governor Gary Herbert issued an executive order Saturday extending the state of emergency in an effort to contain the spread of COVID-19, a day after the state reported a record number of cases.

The Wisconsin Department of the Health Services on Friday reported a record number of new COVID-19 cases. The department urged in a tweet Friday, quote, a second record-setting day for Wisconsin cases as we add 2500-plus to our total. Please take steps to avoid illness and protect your community.

Stay home if you can, stay six feet away from others, wash your hands often, and #MaskUpWisconsin.

REINER: The parts of the country that are doing well have remained mask up, you know, walk through the streets of New York, just about everyone is wearing a mask, similar in D.C.


CHEN: And you mentioned the National Cathedral bells will toll 200 times this evening. And later tonight, the Democratic National Committee is planning a protest outside the White House and they will have lights at their demonstration also honoring that 200,000 lives lost threshold in this country that we'll likely meet today.

Victor and Christi, back to you.

BLACKWELL: HME says that by January 1st, 378,000 lives could be lost.

Natasha Chen, thanks so much.

PAUL: Health policy scholar and dean of the National School of Tropical Medicine, Dr. Peter Hotez, with us now.

Dr. Hotez, it's good to see you this morning.

So, when we just -- what we just heard from Natasha there about how cases do seem in some states to be increasing again, we've heard from the very beginning or from very early on at least that having a vaccine is what's going to be key here. We heard the president this week say that everyone will be able to get a vaccine for COVID by April of 2021.

Is that realistic?


Yeah, it's hard to really say that we'll have the whole U.S. population vaccinated by April. The way it works, we have three vaccines now in clinical trials, what are called phase three clinical trials. These are pivotal trials leading to licensure.

We'll know by the end of the year whether one of those three vaccines, the two mRNA vaccines, Moderna and Pfizer, and AstraZeneca Oxford vaccine, although that's on pause. We won't know whether or not any of those three vaccines actually works and is safe. We don't know that yet. That's an important point to make.

And then, if it's determined that one or more of them work, then we can start releasing them to the public because they're already being manufactured. And so, by the early part of next year, we'll start releasing it to the public. It's going to take a while to do this, because, remember, some of these vaccines, like the Pfizer vaccine, has to be kept in a deep freeze minus 94 degrees Fahrenheit. So, it's not like you can release those vaccines to your local

pharmacy to deliver that. There's going to have to be a lot more complicated mechanisms than that. So, that's a long way of saying I don't see this until Q3 of 2021 before we see a significant percentage of the U.S. population vaccinated, which, by the way, it's still an incredible accomplishment and record.

PAUL: Absolutely. I want to ask you as well about all the information we're hearing about long haulers. We think that when we hear long haulers, we're talking about people who might be older.

I want to introduce you to Eli Lipman. He's 9 years old. He had COVID and he is a long hauler. Here's what he is saying.


ELI LIPMAN, COVID-19 LONG-HAULER: Kids, I'm sorry to say this, but it is a big deal. It will hurt. You just got to face the truth. Sometimes you're not okay.

Kids have long haul. They're not okay. But the good side is you will get better.


PAUL: We hope he gets better. He's very optimistic there, obviously.

Are you as optimistic that these long haulers are going to recover and is there any evidence of why they're not able to do so yet?

HOTEZ: I think we need to bring that kid into the White House and make him a spokesperson for the coronavirus task force. He did a great job.

PAUL: He did, didn't he?

HOTEZ: Look, we always focus on deaths, right, Christi? We always say about, now, we're talking about 200,000 deaths. That's the tip of the iceberg. There's at least five times more individuals who have significant deficits, as a consequence of their infection. You give it the name long haul.

This is a brand new virus. We don't know how long it's going to last. What we're seeing is, remember, this virus is not just causing lung injury. It causes terrible vascular injury, clotting issues, thrombotic events, that means heart attacks, pulmonary emboli, strokes, and people are suffering for a long time because of those very important events.


And then we're also seeing the mechanism we don't understand, chronic neurologic deficits, cognitive disturbances. Some people are calling it brain fog. They can't concentrate, they're exhausted. They have chronic fatigue.

We're also seeing a lot of newer psychiatric disturbances, depressions really common now. And so, we'll know over the next year the full extent of this illness. But it's a terrible illness to get.

It's not just a matter of a light switch, either you die or survive, significant disability because of this. And again, this virus affects so many people living in low-income neighborhoods. Many who don't have insurance. This virus has revealed a lot of problems in our health care infrastructure and our level of insurance and our health system.

So, all of this is going to come out over the next year. This is going to have long-term ramifications. It's going to affect medical training for residents. This will be with us for years.

PAUL: Yeah, I feel like we're on a whole new phase of this when we talk about long haulers.

Dr. Peter Hotez, so grateful to have you with us and your expertise. Thank you, sir.

HOTEZ: Thank you so much.

BLACKWELL: The new chant at the Trump rallies. Fill that seat. The president hyping up the supporters promising to announce a nominee pick soon. We'll talk with two political strategists about the debate and what should happen next. Should he pick and should this Senate confirm?



BLACKWELL: The debate over who should be able to pick Ruth Bader Ginsburg' successor. Let's get into it. The president says that it has his obligation. And about 24 hours after the announcement of the justice's death, the president was on stage at a rally teasing his crowd about who he should pick.


DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: A woman for the Supreme Court, yes, woman, yes?

Let's give it one more quick chance. Who would rather have a man on the Supreme Court? You're the manist.

Who would rather have a woman on the Supreme Court?


BLACKWELL: All right. Let's talk about this with our CNN political commentators. Alice Stewart, Republican Strategist, Maria Cardona, Democratic strategist and -- they co-host a podcast, "Hot Mics from Left to Right".

Maria, Alice, welcome back. Good morning.



BLACKWELL: All right. So, Alex, let's start here. I want to start with what people are fairly calling hypocrisy. I want to listen to the current Senate Judiciary Chair, Lindsey Graham, and the two most senior Republican members of the committee, Senators Grassley and Cornyn. This is 2016.


SEN. CHUCK GRASSLEY (R-IA): If the Senate considered a Supreme Court nominee during a heated presidential election campaign, the court would become even more political than it already is.

SEN. JOHN CORNYN (R-TX): This nomination will change the ideological balance of the Supreme Court for a generation. Justice Scalia served for 30 years. So because of that, because of all of this, I believe the American people should have their voices heard in the selection of the next Supreme Court nominee.

SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM (R-SC): If an opening comes in the last year of president Trump's term and the primary process has started, we'll wait until the next election.


BLACKWELL: Graham said that after the Kavanaugh committee vote.

Listen, they're trying to sell this as principle, as some precedent, why would someone call this wrong if they're calling it a power grab, hypocrisy, they see an opportunity to have a judicial legacy and they're taking it regardless of what they said four years ago?

STEWART: Well, Victor, it's important to look at this historically. Since 1880, if the same party controls the Senate as does the White House, it is customary for them to go forward with the Supreme Court nominee even if we are this close to an election.

The only time there's been a change in that is when the Senate is of an opposing party from the sitting president, which is what we had back when Obama was the president. It's critical that they move forward with this based on the fact, this is the duty of the president and certainly of the Senate.

It's not unheard of to have quick appointments and nominations. Look, we have 44 days before this election and it's not unusual to have a quick appointment to nominations. Ruth Bader Ginsburg was nominated in 42 days. Others have been nominated in less days and confirmed.

So, this is not unprecedented. I think the fact that now we're seeing some Democrats light their hair on fire about it goes to show that Republicans and commitment to the Supreme Court for years is something that they may be a little bit late to the game on.

BLACKWELL: There were 269 days between the death of Antonin Scalia and the 2016 election. And Ruth Bader Ginsburg was confirmed 96-3. I don't think anybody expects that to happen any time soon. Maria, your response to that?

CARDONA: You know, Alice has some great talking points, but like she likes to say on our podcast, it's hogwash.


This is nothing less than pure hypocrisy. Like you said, Victor, in the opening, what people are saying is absolutely true. A complete and total power grab on behalf of these Republicans.

Let's just listen to their own words. It must be uncomfortable, or not. Lindsey Graham has made peace with being a hypocrite.

But his words really ring true today. He even told us all to use them against him. So we will.

And so many other Republicans who understand the kind of hypocrisy that this is because of what they said before. Look, this is not only hypocrite hypocritical on behalf of Republicans, it could be politically damaging. There are a handful of Republican senators who are up for re-election in swing states and I don't think that this is going to be good for them.

Why you see Susan Collins actually coming out and saying that the next president who was elected on November 3rd should be the one to make this election for the next Supreme Court justice. This is going to be an issue that's going to galvanize Democrats in the way they never had before.

BLACKWELL: Let me ask you about this, Maria, this Marquette University poll that just came out this weekend, coincidentally taken before Ginsburg's death. Sixty-seven percent of respondents agree that the Senate should hold hearings and vote on a Trump nominee if there's a vacancy on the court before the election.

And, look at this, I think we have the graphic we can put up. That includes 63 percent of Democrats respondents, independents of the Senate hypocrisy. Voters say if it's open, fill it.

Maria, why are 63 percent of Democrats wrong?

CARDONA: Well, you know, this is the same kind of poll that we saw when Merrick Garland was out there. When he had to wait or not wait, but he was left waiting, because Republicans would not give him a hearing. So, look, we have to take a look and see what is actually fair. If you take a look at what Republicans said when Merrick Garland was up --


BLACKWELL: Let me bring you back to the polls here.

CARDONA: That could be the bar that focuses on what we should be doing. BLACKWELL: Democrats are saying that 63 percent of Democrats, 67

percent overall says it's in a Trump presidency, if there's an opening, there should be a hearing and they should -- you should vote. I mean, it's not even close here.

So we're hearing Democrats on television and in op-eds say this should not happen, but the respondents to this poll say move forward. And this is not 2016. This is a week ago.

CARDONA: Let's see -- let's see what happens. Let's see what happens now that every Democrat -- not just Democrats. You see Republicans, folks from the Lincoln Project who are Republicans who see how corrupt this president is and understand that moving forward especially if he loses in this election, that that is not a seat that should be filled by Donald Trump.

Let's see what happens after the effect of the death of a legal giant and a goddess of goodness like Ruth Bader Ginsburg was. Her legacy needs to be protected on this court. It is not only a political play here, Victor. This is a play for health care. To protect commission --


BLACKWELL: I'm coming to you, Alex. Hold on.

CARDONA: There are so many issues on the ballot especially with vacancy left by Ruth Bader Ginsburg. There's no question about that.

STEWART: Victor, the reality when it comes to President Trump, one in five people who voted for him, myself included, looked at Supreme Court justices, the nominations as the number one issue for him. Look, when it comes to president, he has kept his word.

I never believed they were going to build a wall and pay for it. We'd repeal and replace Obamacare. But I did trust him when he said he was going to nominate constitutionalist justices. And that is exactly what we're going to do here.

I'm encouraged by the fact that he says he is more than likely going to nominate a female. There's a good list of females that he can nominate. I think that is a tremendous legacy to Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

What is her biggest accomplishment on the Supreme Court is fighting and advocating for the rights of women, and making them fair and equitable across this country.


STEWART: I think we can have a voice that is representative of what Ruth Bader Ginsburg stood for and any day that Joe Biden doesn't put forth a list of Supreme Court nominees is a wasted day because this is a critical issue and will move voters.

CARDONA: Are you saying that Trump's nominee will support Roe versus Wade?

BLACKWELL: We got to wrap it there. I think we know the answer to that. Maria Cardona, Alice Stewart --


CARDONA: Again, it's hypocrisy.

BLACKWELL: Thank you both.

CARDONA: Thanks, Victor.

STEWART: Thanks, Victor.

BLACKWELL: All right. We'll be right back.


PAUL: Well, authorities are trying to decipher who sent a package containing ricin, yes, the poison, to President Trump.

BLACKWELL: Yeah, it was intercepted before it got to the president. Now, according to a source, investigators are focusing in on a sender in Canada. FBI, Secret Service, Postal Service inspectors are looking into whether the package is connected to other mail that was sent and addressed to Texas.


PAUL: Well, president Trump says he's approved a deal for the purchase of social media app TikTok just hours before the app was scheduled to disappear from the U.S. marketplace. Now, this agreement is between ByteDance, the app's parent Chinese company, and American corporations Oracle and Walmart can bring 25,000 jobs to the U.S. It delays restrictions by a week, by the way.

Still to come, how a Colorado brewery inspired by Justice Ginsburg's life-long fight for women's rights is honoring her legacy the best way they know how.


BLACKWELL: For a brewery, get it out, Victor, a brewery in Aurora, Colorado, owned by women, the late Justice Ginsburg has always been a source of inspiration.


PAUL: Yeah, Lady Justice Brewery honored Ginsburg with a mural when they opened it in April and they say it will stay as long as the business does.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We're looking for women throughout history who have been impactful and she was just -- she's number one on the list.

Our first beer in honor of Ruth Bader Ginsburg will be called I Dissent. (END VIDOE CLIP)

BLACKWELL: That honorary Lady Justice Brew will be available beginning this winter.

PAUL: Yeah, for what a weekend it has been. We're reminded of the gift of life, go make good memories today.