GOP Sen. Portman to meet Supreme Court nominee Garland

Judge Merrick Garland, left, President Barack Obama's choice to replace Antonin Scalia on the Supreme Court, meets with Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, in Brown's office on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, April 7, 2016. (AP Photo/Sait Serkan Gurbuz)
Judge Merrick Garland, left, President Barack Obama's choice to replace Antonin Scalia on the Supreme Court, meets with Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, in Brown's office on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, April 7, 2016. (AP Photo/Sait Serkan Gurbuz)

CINCINNATI (AP) — Ohio’s Republican U.S. senator says he’s looking forward to meeting with President Barack Obama’s Supreme Court nominee but insists he will remain opposed to filling the vacancy during the election year.

Rob Portman of the Cincinnati area is scheduled to get together with Judge Merrick Garland on Thursday morning in Washington. Portman told reporters earlier this week that he’s interested in discussing whatever Garland wants to talk about.

Portman’s Democratic opponent, former Gov. Ted Strickland, has criticized him repeatedly for following the GOP opposition led by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky.

Portman says he’s heard a lot from people on both sides of the issue.

Democratic Sen. Sherrod Brown of Cleveland met with Garland last week and then declared his support for him.

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