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President Obama to nominate Scalia successor

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WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama said he plans to nominate a replacement for Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia.

“I plan to fulfill my constitutional responsibilities to nominate a successor in due time,” Obama said Saturday evening.

“There will be plenty of time for me to do so and for the Senate to fulfill its responsibility to give that person a fair hearing and a timely vote.”

Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia died at the age of 79 Saturday. He died in his sleep during a visit to Texas.

Obama said Scalia had a “brilliant legal mind with an energetic style, incisive wit and colorful opinions.”

“He influenced a generation of judges and lawyers and students and profoundly shaped the legal landscape,” Obama said.

The political tension started immediately following the announcement of Scalia’s death. U.S. Senate leaders instantly clashed over who should nominate a replacement to the deceased Justice.

Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said the American people should have a voice via the next president.

Top Senate Democrat Harry Reid said President Obama should have a nominee confirmed “right away.”

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