Published: Wed, April 19, 2017
U.S. | By Eddie Scott

After fierce battle, Gorsuch confirmed to U.S. top court

After fierce battle, Gorsuch confirmed to U.S. top court

The chamber voted 54-45 on Friday to seal the confirmation of Denver appeals court judge Neil Gorsuch.

The 49-year-old Gorsuch, who will be sworn in at the court on Monday, is a respected conservative who has worked for a decade on the USA 10th Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver. Manchin is one of three moderate Democrats up for re-election in states Trump won last fall who voted with the Republicans. Johnny Isakson of Georgia.

"He's going to make an incredible addition to the court", Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said. He will fill the seat that has been vacant since Scalia died and the court had refused to accept former President Barack Obama's nominee, Judge Merrick Garland.

After he is sworn in, Gorsuch will restore the court's conservative voting majority that existed before Scalia's death.

Republicans exulted in the victory.

But Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer, who led the anti-Gorsuch opposition, said the court was "increasingly drifting towards becoming a more pro-corporate court that favors employers, corporations and special interests over working America".

The Supreme Court is the final arbiter of numerous most sensitive issues of American life and law.

As soon as April 13, he could take part in his first private conference, where justices decide whether to hear cases - and some of them could involve gun rights, voting rights and a Colorado baker's refusal to design a cake for a same-sex couple's wedding. He was nominated by Trump shortly after the January inauguration.

The Senate change, affecting how many votes a nominee needs to advance to a final confirmation vote, will apply to all future Supreme Court candidates as well.

But they left the filibuster in place for Supreme Court nominees.

For many conservatives, Trump's choice of Gorsuch made up for any number of other weaknesses in his candidacy and his administration. The maneuvering played out in a tense Senate chamber Thursday with most members in their seats, a rare and theatrical occurrence.

That paved the way for Gorsuch's confirmation vote Friday, but left lawmakers of both parties bemoaning the undoing of comity in the Senate and warning that the 60-vote filibuster barrier on regular legislation, a key tool to force bipartisan cooperation, could be next to go. Then McConnell raised a point of order, suggesting that Supreme Court nominees should not be subjected to a 60-vote threshold but instead a simple majority in the 100-member Senate. And on that he prevailed on a 52-48 party-line vote. That unusual external review omitted consultation with Senate Democrats, contributing to bitter Democrat complaints about the way the whole process was handled.

Like this: