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Government & Politics

Portman Says He's Meeting with Garland Purely as a Courtesy


Ohio’s Republican U.S. Sen. Rob Portman will be meeting with President Obama’s Supreme Court nominee next Thursday morning (April 14), But he’s cautioning that nothing more should be read into that.

Portman says the White House asked him to meet with Merrick Garland.

  “I think it’s a courtesy. I think you should meet with a member of the federal bench who would like to meet with you. And obviously I’m going to hear him out on whatever he would like to talk about. I’m also going to convey to him my position and my reasoning, which I’ve been very clear on from the beginning.”

Portman says he respects fellow Republican Sen. Susan Collins of Maine, but has no intention of following her lead in calling for the Senate to vote on Garland’s nomination – or that of any other nominee put forward by Obama. He says the court would have more credibility if the next president makes the nomination.

Portman’s opponent this fall, former Gov. Ted Strickland, says Portman and the Republican leadership are shirking their constitutional duty.