In United States, President Barack Obama has nominated veteran appeals court judge Merrick Garland to be the next US Supreme Court Justice. The Supreme Court vacancy follows the death of Antonin Scalia last month. Judge Garland, 63, is viewed as a moderate and has won praise from senior Republican figures. The appointment has to be ratified by the Senate, but its Republican majority

has vowed to block a vote on any Supreme Court nominee from Mr Obama.
Republicans have called on the President to leave the nomination to his successor, who will be elected in November. The vacancy has become a major issue in the presidential election because the high court is often the final say on divisive issues such as abortion, immigration and climate change.

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