News Worms
News Worms


Neil Gorsuch received final confirmation to Supreme Court Friday morning

Neil Gorsuch received final confirmation to Supreme Court Friday morning

On Nov. 21, 2013, when Democrats controlled the Senate, then-Senate Majority Leader Reid similarly deployed the "nuclear option" to end Republican filibusters blocking President Barack Obama' lower-court nominees, as described in a more in-depth piece by The Conversation.

Democrats seethed for months over Garland's treatment, and under pressure from liberal activists fuming over the Trump presidency they mounted a filibuster Thursday to block Gorsuch.

The Senate, which previous year refused to consider Democratic former President Barack Obama's nominee to the court, voted 54-45 to approve Republican Trump's pick, Colorado-based federal appeals court judge Neil Gorsuch, to the lifetime job.

Further easing Gorsuch's transition is that his former boss, Justice Anthony Kennedy, remains on the court.

Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Missouri) voted against confirming Gorsuch because she says some of his decisions favor corporations instead of the little guy. "Republican Senators forever lowered the bar for Supreme Court nominees just to get him on the Court, and will bear responsibility for his judgments", Murphy said.

"We are writing to urge you to support our efforts to preserve existing rules, practices, and traditions as they pertain to the right of Members to engage in extended debate on legislation before the United States Senate", said the letter that was spearheaded by GOP Sen. If the justices are divided 4 to 4 in any of them, the most likely route to breaking a ties would be to schedule a new round of arguments, with Gorsuch participating.

But that evaluation of Gorsuch wouldn't have guaranteed confirmation if not for McConnell's move Thursday to change Senate rules, invoking the so-called "nuclear option", by removing the ability of Democrats to filibuster the nomination. Three Democrats joined all 52 Senate Republicans in confirming Gorsuch, who, at 49 years old, could serve on the Supreme Court for decades.

Gorsuch was confirmed Friday by the Senate. By late spring or early summer, the court might be asked to consider President Donald Trump's proposed ban on visitors from six majority Muslim countries.

"It's a great day, indeed", said McConnell in a telephone interview Friday afternoon after the vote.

They're the ones who ushered in the era of scorched-earth judicial nominations with their character assassination of Supreme Court nominees Robert Bork in 1987 and Clarence Thomas in 1991. Trump himself predicted to reporters aboard Air Force One that "there could be as many as four" Supreme Court vacancies for him to fill during his administration. Gorsuch will be the first former Supreme Court clerk to serve alongside a former boss.

Gorsuch's confirmation ends the longest Supreme Court vacancy since 1862 during the American Civil War, with the court down a justice for nearly 14 months since long-serving conservative Justice Antonin Scalia died on February 13, 2016.

"In fact, under a certain scenario, there could even be more than that", Trump said. And in many ways the showdown had been pre-ordained, the final chapter in years of partisan warfare over judicial nominees.

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