Democrats Vow to Block Gorsuch From 'Stolen Seat'

The battle could drag on for months
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 1, 2017 5:03 AM CST
Updated Feb 1, 2017 5:36 AM CST

(Newser) – President Trump unveiled Neil Gorsuch as his Supreme Court nominee Tuesday night, and if the process goes very smoothly, the court could finally be back to nine members as soon as April—but you won't find many people willing to bet on the process going smoothly. The Washington Post predicts that Gorsuch's confirmation hearings in the Senate will be the most heated in more than a decade. Democrats have already signaled that they plan to filibuster the nomination as retribution for the GOP's blocking of Obama nominee Merrick Garland. "This is a stolen seat," Democratic Sen. Jeff Merkley said in a statement. A roundup of coverage:

  • The New York Times, which predicts that the process will drag on for months, looks at the next steps in the process for the conservative judge, including tight scrutiny of Gorsuch's entire career, meetings with senators, mock questioning from a Republican "murder board," and the televised hearings Joe Biden once likened to a "Kabuki dance."

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  • The Hill reports that other Democrats lining up against Gorsuch include Sen. Elizabeth Warren, who slammed Trump for failing to choose a consensus nominee. "Instead, he carried out his public promise to select a nominee from a list drawn up by far-right activist groups that were financed by big business interests," she said.
  • The Los Angeles Times looks at the "nuclear option" Republicans might use if Democrats filibuster the nomination. When Democrats controlled the Senate, they changed the rules to eliminate filibusters of presidential nominees—except Supreme Court justices. Republicans could now change the rules to get rid of the exception, a move Trump says he supports.
  • Politico looks at five cases it considers key to understanding Gorsuch's judicial philosophy, including one involving a seventh-grader arrested for burping.
  • The New York Daily News rounds up some controversial moments from the nominee's education and career, including columns he wrote attacking anti-apartheid protesters in the 1980s.
  • In an op-ed at the conservative National Review, Ed Whelan praises Gorsuch, a former Review contributor, as an originalist and a worthy successor to Antonin Scalia.
(Read more Neil Gorsuch stories.)

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