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Only 43 percent can name a Supreme Court justice

21 March, 2017, 04:43 | Author: Mae Harvey

Gorsuch emphasized "the importance of an independent judiciary".

In past hearings, the questions have centered around the nominee's legal qualifications, decisions as a judge, positions on political issues, interpretations of the Constitution, general legal philosophy and current legal controversies. For the executive to ensure those laws are faithfully enforced.

Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas) recounted Monday some of the policies of previous presidents that could have been wielded against Democratic Supreme Court nominees to show the hypocrisy of the questions being asked of President Trump's nominee, Judge Gorsuch. Since Scalia's death, the court has been split 4-4 between conservatives and liberals.

Gorsuch's entry to the committee room caused a lighthearted moment because there was such a din of shutter clicks from media photographers that the 49-year-old appeals court judge couldn't keep a straight face as he sat down at the witness table. That's compared to 24 percent who expressed a negative view of the nominee,

However, Republicans could change Senate rules to require only 51 votes to confirm Gorsuch - the so-called nuclear option.

If Gorsuch is confirmed, he will re-establish a narrow conservative majority on the nation's highest court.

Following opening statements by members of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch will deliver his opening statement at his confirmation hearing in Washington, D.C. Forty-one percent said they would not be justified in doing so. The more partisan his confirmation hearing gets, and the more the battle lines are drawn, the harder it could be for the GOP to round up the eight votes they would then need.

-Jennifer Sisk, a lawyer in Colorado who took a class with Neil Gorsuch in the spring semester 2016, writing a letter to the Senate Judiciary Committee about comments the judge supposedly made in class. "Some of my colleagues seem to have rediscovered an appreciation for the need to confine each branch of government to its proper sphere". "His grasp on the separation of powers_including judicial independence_enlivens his body of work", Grassley said in prepared remarks ahead of the hearing.

The senator, a Democrat, said she is concerned about the working poor, Muslim Americans who are the victims of hate crimes, preserving the choice of women in health care and protecting the rights of gays and lesbians.

Leahy said Republicans are now pressing to "rubber stamp a nominee selected by extreme interest groups".

The disclaimer (and covering fire) follows an intense examination of Gorscuh and his record in the aftermath of his January 31 nomination to the U.S. Supreme Court by President Donald Trump.

JUDY WOODRUFF: Some Democrats also aimed their attacks at President Trump.

"I am deeply disappointed that it is under these circumstances that we begin these hearings", California's Sen. "And we are here today to fight back". The bar is always high to achieve a seat on the Supreme Court, but in these unusual times - when there is unprecedented stress on our system of checks and balances - the bar is even higher for Judge Neil M. Gorsuch to demonstrate independence.

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