WASHINGTON— U.S. Senator Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) released the following statement today after President Barack Obama announced the nomination of the Chief Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, Merrick Garland to fill the United States Supreme Court seat held by the late Justice Antonin Scalia:

“The president fulfilled his constitutional obligation today, now the Senate must fulfill ours. When each one of us took the oath of office, we swore to support and defend the Constitution and to faithfully discharge the duties of a Senator. If Senate Republicans refuse to consider the president’s nominee, they will be willingly violating the spirit of that sworn oath. They will be dragging the Supreme Court down into the political muck and compromising the independence and effectiveness of the nation's highest court.”

“Providing advice and consent for Supreme Court nominees is a duty we must all take seriously. This responsibility must exist above the political fray. I applaud President Obama for doing his job and putting forth an experienced jurist for consideration. Over the coming weeks, I will study Mr. Garland’s qualifications and judicial philosophy to determine whether or not he will earn my support for his confirmation to the bench.”