Sen. Bill Nelson shed his hyper-cautious reputation Monday, declaring that he expects to vote against President Donald Trump's nominee to succeed Anthony Kennedy on the U.S. Supreme Court.
"Obviously I have to wait and see who the nominee is, but if, as President Trump has suggested, he's going to have a litmus test — and he said said this over and over — on Roe V. Wade, then I'm not going to be voting for some justice who's going to overturn Roe v. Wade," Nelson said following a Tampa news conference with local environmental advocates touting his record and criticizing Gov. Rick Scott's.
Nelson is among the most vulnerable Democratic senators running for reelection this year, and he faces intense pressure from both the left and right on what is probably the most consequential decision made so far by the president.
Nelson almost immediately faced pressure from both ends of the political spectrum, with liberals demanding he oppose Trump’s pick — or even allowing a vote — and conservatives seeking to exploit his running for re-election in a state Trump narrowly won.
Last week, am advocacy group called One Nation began running digital ad calling on Nelson to “say no to the left” and support Trump’s pick. The ad runs through Tuesday with a modest $10,000 behind it.
But “this is merely the first step in our full-fledged advocacy campaign for the nomination and confirmation of a constitutional conservative to the U.S. Supreme Court,” said One Nation president Steven Law.
Gov. Rick Scott, who is challenging Nelson, released a video ad Monday that deemed the Democrat a “rubber stamp” for President Obama’s judicial nominees and noted that he “voted against Supreme Court Justice Gorsuch.”
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