Dems React to Death of 'Devoted' Conservative Justice Scalia

Among Senate Democrats, Sen. Barbara Mikulski (D-Md.) remembered Scalia as a man "with a strong devotion to his principles" who "left an indelible mark on the Supreme Court and the laws of the United States."

“While I differed with Justice Scalia’s views and jurisprudence, he was a brilliant, colorful and outspoken member of the Supreme Court," said Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.). "My thoughts and prayers are with his family and his colleagues on the court who mourn his passing.”

Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) said "there is no doubt Justice Antonin Scalia was a brilliant man."

"We had our differences and I disagreed with many of his opinions, but he was a dedicated jurist and public servant. I offer my condolences to his family," Reid said, before firing a preemptive strike at Senate Republicans who will try to delay a nomination for Scalia's replacement until the next president.

“The president can and should send the Senate a nominee right away," he continued. "With so many important issues pending before the Supreme Court, the Senate has a responsibility to fill vacancies as soon as possible.""...Failing to fill this vacancy would be a shameful abdication of one of the Senate’s most essential Constitutional responsibilities.” 

In the House, Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said she was "deeply saddened" by the death of Scalia, "who made history as the first Italian American named to the Supreme Court."

"Through this community, I saw his pride in his heritage and, more importantly, his dedication to his beautiful family," Pelosi said. “Whether or not you agreed with him, Justice Antonin Scalia served our nation with deep patriotism and distinction on the Supreme Court for nearly 30 years.  He has been one of the strongest voices in the great American debate around our Constitution."

"He leaves behind a formidable record of jurisprudence, and a fierce articulation of his understanding of the Constitution."