Kamala Harris Can Break a Senate Tie on Biden’s Supreme Court Pick

While enticing, the legal argument that she can’t just doesn’t hold water.


t is always tempting to solve a political problem with a novel constitutional argument.

In September 2020, grasping at any straw he could to stop Amy Coney Barrett’s nomination, Laurence Tribe argued that Mike Pence could not cast a tie-breaking vote if three of the Senate’s 53 Republicans voted no. Tribe cited a 2018 student-law-review note by Samuel Morse (not the inventor of the telegraph) and a 2018 blog post by attorney John Langford. (It should set off alarm bells that both of those sources date from the Trump presidency.)

As it turned out, only one Republican (Susan Collins) voted no, so

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