Flags at half-staff for Scalia, political fight heats up

Antonin Scalia
U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia speaks at the University of Minnesota as part of the law school's Stein Lecture series, Tuesday, Oct. 20, 2015, in Minneapolis. (AP Photo/Jim Mone)

WASHINGTON (AP) – A presidential proclamation has ordered flags to be flown at half-staff at the Supreme Court, the White House and elsewhere in honor of the late Justice Antonin Scalia.

As the flags have risen, so has the political heat over the vacancy on the nine-member court.

At issue is the right of Democratic President Barack Obama to make a nomination and the role of the Republican-led Senate in confirming that choice.

Obama pledges a nomination “in due time.” Senate GOP leader Mitch McConnell thinks it should wait for the next president.

Ted Cruz, one of two GOP senators running for president, tells NBC’s “Meet the Press” that “we’re advising that a lame-duck president in an election year is not going to be able to tip the balance of the Supreme Court.”

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