Win by Democrat Mark Kelly in Arizona Senate race could complicate Trump's Supreme Court nomination

The GOP can have only four Senate Republicans vote against a Trump Supreme Court nomination to defeat the process.

Updated: September 21, 2020 - 8:55am

Democrat Mark Kelly winning the Senate race in Arizona in November would likely shirk the Republicans’ chamber majority and complicate the Supreme Court confirmation process for a President Trump nominee.

If Kelly, who is leading in polls against GOP incumbent Sen. Martha McSally, wins he could be sworn in as soon as the results are certified because the race is a special election. McSally was appointed to the seat after GOP Sen. John McCain died in 2018. The other winners of the Nov. 3 elections don’t take office until January.

President Trump says he'll name by Friday or Saturday a nominee to replace Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who died Friday. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said the nominee will get a vote before the November election.

Republicans hold 53 of the 100 Senate seats. With McSally in the Senate, the GOP can have only four members vote against a Trump nominee to defeat the process.

GOP Sen. Lisa Murkowski, Alaska, and Susan Collins, Maine, have already said that they are opposed voting on a replacement before the election, which is now less than 45 days away. Vice President Mike Pence would vote in a tie-breaker.