Neil Gorsuch confirmed to Supreme Court

Republicans Clear Way For Gorsuch Confirmation With'Nuclear Option

After weeks of turmoil, the Senate confirmed Trump nominee Neil Gorsuch as the Supreme Court's youngest justice Friday, filling a 14-month vacancy after the death of Antonin Scalia and restoring a rightward tilt that could last for years.

The final senate vote 54 to 45 three democrats voting yes and not a single republican voting no.

During his confirmation hearings, Gorsuch said that judges are not politicians in robes and that his 10th Circuit record supplies proof. "Judge Gorsuch is a strict constitutionalist who believes that a judge's personal policy preferences should not affect the outcome of a case".

It was a shamefully partisan dereliction of the Senate's constitutional duty to provide advice and consent, and the effects of this cynical power play were magnified when President Donald Trump nominated the far-right-leaning Judge Gorsuch instead of a more moderate and generally acceptable candidate.

The Senate confirm Gorsuch 54-45 with three Democrats siding with Republicans - Joe Manchin of West Virginia, Joe Donnelly of IN and Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota. Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.) did not vote. A fourth Senate Democrat, Michael Bennet from Gorsuch's home state of Colorado, has said he will not join in the filibuster against Gorsuch but has not said how he will vote on confirmation. He will be officially sworn in on Monday morning. In Hobby Lobby v. Sebelius and Little Sisters of the Poor v. Burwell, Gorsuch wrote that a requirement that employers provide contraceptive coverage for their employees could make the religious complicit in what they consider a sin.

The 49-year-old holds many similar lauded credentials of a typical Supreme Court justice; he graduated from Columbia, Harvard and Oxford universities. You're on the Supreme Court.

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Gorsuch was hailed by gun rights activists, anti-abortion organizations and business groups, and denounced by environmentalists, feminists and unions.

Justice Gorsuch embodies what a good judge should be: He's impartial, applies the law fairly, and is an ardent supporter of the written Constitution.

Even as senior Republicans lamented the voting change, McConnell and some allies argued that all they were doing was returning to a time, not long ago, when filibusters of judicial nominees were unusual, and it was virtually unheard-of to try to block a Supreme Court nominee in that fashion.

Republicans said Democrats had no one to blame but themselves, launching a filibuster they knew Republicans were determined to overcome.

But that evaluation of Gorsuch wouldn't have guaranteed confirmation if not for McConnell's move Thursday to change Senate rules, invoking the so-called "nuclear option," by removing the ability of Democrats to filibuster the nomination.

Vice President Mike Pence presided over the final vote Friday, even though his vote as a tie-breaker was not necessary.

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