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Cruz: Gorsuch nomination has "superlegitimacy"

21 March 2017, 01:19 | Darin Griffith

Though former President Barack Obama nominated Merrick Garland, chief judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, to replace Scalia, Republicans - who then and now hold a majority in Congress - refused to proceed with Garland's nomination.

Colorado's two senators, Republican Cory Gardner and Democrat Michael Bennett, introduced Judge Gorsuch.

"I find this originalist judicial philosophy to be really troubling", Sen.

Grassley has said he expects "high interest" in his committtee's hearing this week.

Sen. Patrick Leahy called it an "extraordinary blockade" that was "totally unprecedented in our country's whole history".

"Last month, [California Senator Diane] Feinstein - the top Democrat on the Senate Judiciary Committee - requested information from Gorsuch about all "significant" cases in which Gorsuch helped make decisions about litigation or craft strategy".

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Republicans have a 52-48 majority, so at least eight Democrats and independents will have to vote with Republicans. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., vowed that the Senate will vote on Gorsuch's nomination before leaving for its April 8 Easter recess. His nomination has been cheered by Republicans and praised by some left-leaning legal scholars, and Democrats head into the Senate Judiciary Committee hearings on Monday divided over how hard to fight him.

During this confirmation hearing, I urge my colleagues to focus our analysis on whether Gorsuch will be an impartial judge, and not whether he is suitable to run for public office of any particular party.

The nods to Garland reflect the simmering anger among Democrats about what happened past year. In early March a group of 11 progressive political organizations signed a letter demanding that all Senate Democrats refuse to confirm.

Gorsuch's supporters dispute such criticism and argue that the judge is exceptionally well-qualified by background and temperament, mild-mannered and down to earth, the author of lucid and well-reasoned opinions. He graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Columbia in just three years, got his law degree from Harvard, and he's an Oxford scholar to boot. Robert Bork, whose nomination was ultimately rejected by the Senate, was reported unfavorably in 1987; Clarence Thomas, who won confirmation, was reported without recommendation in 1991. "He's the right jurist for the job". "Neil is a big Denver Broncos fan, and I can tell you that I'm a big fan of his", he said, which may explain Elway's decision to make the endorsement.

All of the witnesses that Schumer brought to the Hill last week were plaintiffs in cases where Gorsuch sided with an employer over an employee.

At the same time, Grassley tries to head off expected Democratic arguments that Gorsuch often ruled in favor of corporate plaintiffs. During Gorsuch's time at the Department of Justice under President George W. Bush, the DOJ argued that the president should have nearly no limit to their authority when it comes to national security, even when naming someone a combatant to be detained indefinitely. The Court could allow for more state restrictions on abortion and other women's rights but she thinks that because of Justice Anthony Kennedy's more liberal voting record on the issues that Roe v. Wade should remain intact.



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