April 7, 2017
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GORSUCH CONFIRMATION EDITION
For the latest on Judge Gorsuch’s nomination: www.confirmgorsuch.com
“The Senate confirmed Judge Neil Gorsuch to the U.S. Supreme Court on Friday.
“The Republican majority was joined in the 54-45 vote by a few Democrats in confirming the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals judge to the high court. Gorsuch’s success comes after the Senate killed the filibuster for Supreme Court nominations on Thursday, effectively paving the way for Gorsuch to join the high court. . . .
“‘The Supreme Court to me is a sacred institution,” said Utah Sen. Orrin Hatch, a Republican member of the Senate Judiciary Committee who supported Gorsuch, on Friday. ‘We’ve had great Democratic justices. We’ve had great Republican justices. … Neil Gorsuch, I have every confidence, will be one of the all-time great justices for that court.’”
“Chief Justice John Roberts is set to administer the constitutional oath in a private ceremony at 9 a.m. in the justices’ conference room at the court.
“Justice Anthony Kennedy is then scheduled to administer the judicial oath at a public ceremony at the White House later in the morning, the Supreme Court said in a news release.”
3. The Wall Street Journal’s editorial board explains why yesterday’s return to Senate tradition was “Mitch McConnell’s finest hour.”
“It must have been a shock when Mr. McConnell took that bet and waited for the results of the 2016 election to decide the future direction of the Supreme Court. He won. Mr. McConnell deserves great credit both for holding his ground then and for holding his caucus together on breaking the filibuster Thursday in the face of a cynical Democratic narrative about their ‘stolen’ Supreme Court seat.
“Mr. Schumer is right on one score—that the politicizing of Supreme Court nominees goes back a long way. We recall the exact moment: the 1987 nomination of Robert Bork. Like Judge Gorsuch, Bork’s legal qualifications were unimpeachable. So the Democratic left created the then-novel strategy of taking down Bork on politics alone. This week’s episode upholds the principle that the Senate should be able to exercise its ‘advice and consent’ role with a majority vote—in elections and the Senate.”
4. In The Washington Post, Robert Barnes reports that Gorsuch could influence the Court as early as next week.
“The new justice at the Supreme Court, Neil M. Gorsuch, is likely to have an immediate impact, weighing in as early as next week on whether to expand the breadth of the Second Amendment, considering how voting rights should be protected and perhaps casting the deciding vote in a major separation of church and state case. . . .
“President Trump’s pick of Gorsuch to be the nation’s 113th justice will restore a conservative-leaning, Republican-nominated majority to a court that has either deadlocked or drifted to the left since the death of Justice Antonin Scalia in February 2016.
“[Elizabeth] Wydra said the addition of Gorsuch does more than simply replace Scalia with a like-minded justice.
“‘Substituting Gorsuch for Scalia extends the conservative life of that seat for another few decades,’ she said.”
“Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D., Mass.) also pushed for the nuclear option in 2012 and 2013. She wrote an op-ed in 2012 for the Huffington Post calling for the nuclear option to kill the filibuster for all Senate votes.
“‘If Republicans continue to filibuster these highly qualified nominees for no reason other than to nullify the president’s constitutional authority, then senators not only have the right to change the filibuster rules, senators have a duty to change the filibuster rules,’ Warren said in 2013.
“But on Thursday Warren joined her Democratic colleagues in decrying McConnell’s use of the nuclear option.”