President Trump was booed by a crowd gathered at the Supreme Court building on Thursday while paying respects to late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
Ginsburg’s body is currently lying in repose on the steps of the high court. The late justice passed away last Friday at the age of 87 due to complications from pancreatic cancer.
Trump arrived at the Supreme Court building on Thursday and appeared at the top of the steps near where Ginsburg’s body was placed. After the crowd noticed his presence there, they began to loudly boo the president.
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The booing soon shifted toward chants of “vote him out,” which continued until the president and First Lady Melania Trump departed.
Here is Trump getting booed as he stands behind RBG’s casket at SCOTUS. The crowd then chants “vote him out” and “honor her wish.” He shuffles away pretty quickly. pic.twitter.com/gTUh2Ab8db
— Mark Joseph Stern (@mjs_DC) September 24, 2020
While Trump came to the Supreme Court to ostensibly pay his respects to Ginsburg, he didn’t appear to show much respect to her family members earlier in the week. During an interview on Fox News’s “Fox & Friends” program on Monday morning, the president was asked to comment on Ginsburg’s dying wish — that the next president select her successor, not Trump.
Trump offered a theory of his own, without providing evidence to support it, that Democratic lawmakers had probably written and made up the story of Ginsburg’s last wish.
“I don’t know that she said that, or was that written out by Adam Schiff and [Senate Minority Leader Chuck] Schumer and [House Speaker Nancy] Pelosi?” Trump said. “I would be more inclined to say the second, okay?”
Trump also announced earlier this week that he would name a successor to Ginsburg’s seat this Saturday, a mere eight days after she had died, in order to begin the process of confirming a new justice to the Supreme Court before or shortly after Election Day later this year.
Many have criticized Republicans in the Senate for agreeing to the president’s quick timeframe, as they had previously blocked former President Barack Obama from naming a new justice in 2016, arguing that a departing president should not name someone new to the court during an election year.
Obama waited a full month after Justice Antonin Scalia had passed away before announcing the nomination of Judge Merrick Garland to fill his seat. GOP senators refused to even hold hearings for Garland. After Trump was elected the following November, he nominated Justice Neil Gorsuch to the seat. Gorsuch was confirmed in April 2017.
Voters agree that Trump and Republicans should be consistent on the matter of replacing Ginsburg. A Reuters/Ipsos poll published earlier this week found that 62 percent of Americans want the winner of the presidential race to decide who the next Supreme Court justice should be, with only 23 percent saying Trump should name someone now or during the lame duck session.