Those of us, who praise Scalia for his constructionist stance as well as his brilliance, must honor his memory by adhering to the language of that United States Constitution Scalia so valiantly defended and protected. This is what it says: He (meaning the President) shall have Power, by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, to make Treaties, provided two thirds of the Senators present concur; and he shall nominate, and by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, shall appoint Ambassadors, other public Ministers and Consuls, Judges of the supreme Court, and all other Officers of the United States, whose Appointments are not herein otherwise provided for, and which shall be established by Law: but the Congress may by Law vest the Appointment of such inferior Officers, as they think proper, in the President alone, in the Courts of Law, or in the Heads of Departments.
There is no time frame required for the appointment and there is no time frame or rules regarding Advice and Consent. If fact, the constitution does not stipulate any qualification or requirements regarding who can be nominated. The nominee does not have to be a former law clerk, a former judge, or even an attorney. The nominee is not required to have held elected office or even be a citizen of the United States. The single requirement is, “The Judges, both of the supreme and inferior Courts, shall hold their Offices during good Behaviour.” Good behavior is not defined.
The accepted requirement that we have nine justices is not a constitutional requirement. No specific number is stated in the constitution nor is it stated that the number of justices should be an uneven number. The only requirements are, nominated by the president, confirmed by the senate, and good behavior by the justice to remain on the court. All the claims being made by both sides are strictly political posturing. There is not even a constitutional requirement that the seat of Justice Scalia be filled.
Now you know the constitutional requirements, those requirements to which Justice Scalia would wish for us to adhere.