Sen. Orrin Hatch says the biggest issue nobody is talking about in the 2016 election is the impact the next president could have on the Supreme Court. Hatch says there’s a scenario where the next occupant of the Oval Office could nominate three or even four new justices.
“There are a number of justices well over 80 years of age,” Hatch tells Managing Editor Bryan Schott in a video interview.
“If you want a court that supports every liberal idea that comes along and makes law from the bench, that means you should support Hillary Clinton,” says Hatch. “If you want judges who interpret the law using the Constitution, then you have to vote for whoever the GOP nominee is.”
Hatch says he’s worried that the current GOP frontrunner, Donald Trump, does not understand the importance of not only the Supreme Court, but lower court justices as well.
There’s a lot of speculation that Hatch could run again in 2018 after vowing this would be his last term in Washington. Hatch says he still has three years to go in this term, but he’s certainly open to running for an eighth term.
“I’ve had a lot of people who have come to me and said you’ve gotta go again. You have the experience, the background and the knowledge. By gosh, it helps Utah in every way to have you back there. I like those comments,” Hatch says with a laugh.
“I’ve passed some of the most landmark legislation in history, and that’s because I’ve been able to work in a bipartisan manner, and the Democrats know that, so they’re more willing to work with someone like me than others who have to have their ideological way no matter what happens. Nobody can accuse me of not being a rock-ribbed conservative. They try, because I don’t throw myself into a pit you can’t crawl out of. I don’t vote for things that just have no way of accomplishing anything.”