Neil Gorsuch receives enough votes to be confirmed by Senate
Apr 17 2017 by Larry Hoffman
He served as a law clerk in 1993 and 1994 to Justice Byron R. White and Justice Anthony Kennedy.
For now, though, the focus is on the court's newest justice, the 49-year-old Gorsuch. That "led them to pick somewhat more moderate nominees than they would otherwise", because they knew they had to win at least a few votes from the opposing party. He said Gorsuch's selection managed to unite Republicans and pave the way for a more conservative court. The Supreme Court has been operating with only eight justices since Mr Scalia's death.
"With these changes, justices may now be confirmed with the narrowest partisan majority", said Bennet in a statement.
Trump's choice of Gorsuch from a list of 21 potential nominees created in conjunction with the Federalist Society and equally conservative Heritage Foundation soothed Republicans but enraged Democrats, who complained about "dark money" spent on his behalf by other right-wing groups during the confirmation process.
And that change could have far-ranging impacts for the future of the court itself. There are appeals pending on expanding gun rights to include carrying concealed firearms in public, state voting restrictions that critics say are aimed at reducing minority turnout, and allowing business owners to object on religious grounds to provide certain services to gay couples.
On the Supreme Court, Gorsuch could hold the deciding vote on several important issues. The number of these cases right now is unusually large. By contrast, liberal Justice Stephen Breyer typically reaches the opposite result in such cases and tends to rule in favor of prosecutors and police. The court's current term ends in June.
His private swearing-in ceremony is scheduled for the week of 10 April. The state maintains that it can not provide the funding without violating the constitutional requirement of separation of church and state.
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Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell's changing of the rules to get Neil Gorsuch confirmed by a simple majority vote was a short-sighted trade. The victory prompted high-fives between Majority Leader Sen. The yearlong vacancy made the direction of Supreme Court one of the major issues of the 2016 election. They, however, blame Republicans for the poisonous politics of the nomination, arguing that the majority is trying to jam through Gorsuch, who they claim is too extreme, and too supportive of corporate interests.
Democrats opposed Gorsuch in part because Senate Republicans blocked former President Barack Obama's nominee, Merrick Garland, last year. That's more than half of all the 149 filibusters used against presidential nominees in the nation's history.
After almost 20 hours of questioning by the Senate Judiciary Committee in March, Gorsuch's nomination came to full Senate - where Democrats, still angry about the treatment of Garland, filibustered the nomination on Thursday.
Some Republicans, like Sen. Ted Cruz, maintained on Thursday that the Democrats had bowed to demands from the "radical left" in demanding that Democratic senators "obstruct everything".
Democrats and their liberal allies were desultory after losing not only the confirmation battle but the minority party's right to block high court nominations with 41 votes. "Tester's Latest Disregard of Voters", read the subject line of another NRSC email, lambasting Montana Democrat Jon Tester, also up for re-election, for joining in the Democrats' vote to filibuster President Donald Trump's Supreme Court nominee.
Some senators fear that the next to go could be the legislative filibuster, one of the last remaining mechanisms to force bipartisan cooperation on Capitol Hill. On Thursday, Republican Sen. Orrin Hatch of Utah poured cold water on that idea. "If we do that, then the Senate will become like the House". The Senate is a place of deliberation.
A graduate of Columbia University and Harvard Law School with a doctorate in philosophy from Oxford University in England, Gorsuch will be the only justice on the court from outside the coasts - although most of his two decades from when he started undergrad until when he joined the Tenth Circuit was spent on the East Coast, in Washington, New York City, or Boston.