President Reagan said yesterday he would like to see the Senate vote this week on Robert H. Bork's apparently doomed nomination to the Supreme Court.
A quick vote would permit Reagan to move ahead swiftly with a new nominee.
Returning from Camp David, Reagan gave a one-word answer when a reporter asked if he wanted the Senate to vote this week. Without breaking stride as he walked from his helicopter, Reagan said, "Yes."
The timing of the vote will be set by the Senate's Democratic leadership.
Meanwhile, White House chief of staff Howard H. Baker Jr. said he has no interest in a seat on the Supreme Court, adding, "I've seen funeral homes that were livelier than that court."
Baker also ruled himself out as a candidate for the presidency during a wide-ranging question-and-answer session at the Southern Newspaper Publishers Association convention at The Greenbrier in White Sulphur Springs, W. Va.
The former Republican senator from Tennessee defended Reagan's nomination of Bork and said the White House is likely to get at least 45 votes -- still short of the majority needed for confirmation.
"I'm sorry he's not going to make it," he said.
Baker added that a candidate who is "bland and homogenized may be the only way to get someone on the court."
Baker also said that presidential news conferences will become more frequent.
He said Reagan has had few lately because Baker did not want him to have to answer questions about the Iran-contra affair.