The Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden has appealed to Republican senators to delay appointing a new justice to the US Supreme Court until after elections in November.
Donald Trump has nominated a religious conservative lawyer, Amy Coney Barrett, and called for her immediate confirmation, despite criticism that she could then have a say in any legal action if the presidential election result is disputed.
Mr Biden said President Trump also hoped that Coney Barrett would help dismantle President Obama’s healthcare legislation.
He said Mr Trump’s actions were a threat to democracy and called on Republican senators to “step back from the brink”.
Clive Myrie presents BBC News at Ten reporting by north America editor Jon Sopel in Washington.
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