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Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

Senate Judiciary Chairman Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said in a letter to his Democratic colleagues on Monday he has a "different view" of the judicial confirmation process "after the treatment of Justice Kavanaugh" during his 2018 confirmation fight.

Why it matters: Graham opposed holding a vote President Obama's nomination of Merrick Garland following Justice Antonin Scalia's death in 2016, arguing that voters should get to decide in the next election who is appointed to the court.

  • “I want you to use my words against me," Graham said at the time. "If there’s a Republican president in 2016 and a vacancy occurs in the last year of the first term, you can say Lindsey Graham said let’s let the next president, whoever it might be, make that nomination."
  • He repeated in an Oct. 3, 2018 interview with The Atlantic: "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. ... Hold the tape."

Yes, but: Graham argued that circumstances have changed since the Scalia vacancy because the Republican-controlled Senate at the time had been elected because it "committed to checking and balancing the end of President Obama's lame duck presidency."

  • The current Republican majority, which expanded after the 2018 midterm elections, has "committed to confirming President Trump's excellent judicial nominees," Graham wrote.
  • "We followed the precedent that the Senate has followed for 140 years: since the 1880s, no Senate has confirmed an opposite-party president's Supreme Court nominee during an election year."
  • Graham added: "[A]fter the treatment of Justice Kavanaugh, I now have a different view of the Supreme Court nomination process. ... [I]t's clear that there already is one set of rules for a Republican president and one set of rules for a Democrat president."

Go deeper

Updated Dec 29, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Georgia's GOP senators back $2,000 stimulus checks ahead of runoff

Sens. Kelly Loeffler (R-Ga.) and David Perdue (R-Ga.) on Tuesday both came out in favor of increasing direct payments in the coronavirus relief package from $600 to $2,000 per person.

Why it matters: The two Republican senators are on the ballot in a pair of runoffs in Georgia next week that will determine control of the Senate.

2 hours ago - Health

India crosses 1 billion COVID vaccinations milestone

A health worker inoculates a COVID-19 vaccine dose to a man wearing a face mask of Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Beawar, India, in September. Photo: Sumit Saraswat/Pacific Press/LightRocket via Getty Images

India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced Thursday that the country's health workers have now administered more than 1 billion COVID-19 vaccines doses.

Of note: While this is a significant milestone for the country of 1.4 billion, which has been devastated by the coronavirus, only about 30% of the eligible population has been fully vaccinated against the virus, per AP. Roughly 75% has received at least one dose.

Trump says he plans to launch new social media network in 2022

Photo: Chris Delmas/AFP via Getty Images

Former President Trump on Wednesday announced plans to launch a social media network called "Truth Social," and that it would go public via a SPAC.

Why it matters: Most ex-presidents are focused on their legacies, by creating presidential libraries or engaging in philanthropic endeavors. Trump, however, remains consumed by social media.