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Supreme Court nominee Gorsuch heads for confirmation as Senate tears up own rules

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By ERICA WERNER

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In a confrontation that could reshape the Supreme Court for generations, Republicans tore up the Senate’s voting rules Thursday.....

But then in 2013, with Democrats in charge and Republicans blocking President Barack Obama’s nominees, the Democrats did take the step, removing the filibuster for all presidential appointments except the Supreme Court.

The Democrats tore up the U.S. Senate's filibuster rule for confirming lesser federal judges in 2013.

The Republicans tore up the U.S. Senate's last remaining filibuster rule for confirming Supreme Court federal judges in 2017.

Both sides now chose to blame the other for removing the U.S. Senate's filibuster rules. (insert rolleyes smilie here)

2 ( +5 / -3 )

And just wait for the Republican whining in a few years when democrats use this new rule to appoint someone to the supreme court.

-1 ( +5 / -6 )

arrestpaul, lower-court judges are required to conduct the nation's business, and with the GOP slow-walking each and every Obama nominee, the US had reached a crisis point - imagine being a victim of a crime and being told to wait a year for a trail as no judge is available.

The Supreme Court is different - it can function with eight or even fewer justices - a point many in the GOP made when they were afraid Clinton would win.

Vindictive hypocritical cowards are the GOP. That's another asterisk the will haunt Gorsuch's career and another chapter for historians to write of this tragic administration.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

And just wait for the Republican whining in a few years when democrats use this new rule to appoint someone to the supreme court.

Yes, and the same will happen when the GOP get into power and back and forth and back and forth it will go. So each side just has to take it and be patient until their term comes up.

-4 ( +4 / -8 )

....or, when the presidency and senate are held by different parties, that no nominee will be considered in an even-numbered (i.e., election) year - that's another precedent the GOP has graced us with.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

that's another precedent the GOP has graced us with.

Because of the stubbornness of the Democrats.

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

Ah. The stubbornness of the Dems to nominate a SCOTUS in an election year. What is this - Calvinball?

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Ah. The stubbornness of the Dems to nominate a SCOTUS in an election year. What is this - Calvinball?

No, this is about the Dems having a hissy fit because they couldn't get a sure bet with a SCOTUS of their choice that fell more in line or was a more safe bet on some of the issues that are extremely vital to the Dems, with Gorsuch, not so much so now they have to deal with a man who has a voting record on voting by the constitution and how the law was written and not how HE personally feel the law says or interject his beliefs into any rulings and that scares Dems to their inner core.

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

Okay, Bass, have it your way. According to your logic, if the Dems take the Senate in '18, Trump (or, more likely by that point, Pence) will just have to suck it. Goose - gander thing, you must agree.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Okay, Bass, have it your way. According to your logic, if the Dems take the Senate in '18, Trump (or, more likely by that point, Pence) will just have to suck it. Goose - gander thing, you must agree.

I agree, but now the Dems have thrown down the gauntlet and this fighting will only worsen, because I expect payback from the Dems, but the Dems have to also realize, it will come back on them as well. Bad move you guys, but that's politics, so let the chips fall where they may.

-5 ( +3 / -8 )

bass: No, this is about the Dems having a hissy fit because they couldn't get a sure bet with a SCOTUS of their choice

Well, yeah...heh. The Republicans came up with a new rule that a sitting president doesn't have the right to choose the Supreme Court justice, only the next president does. I think you can understand why Democrats would be upset. It was our turn to choose, and so the GOP changed the rules to take our choice away and gave it to themselves. That isn't a change that benefits America or Americans, it was a choice to help their own party at the expense of moderates and liberals all over America.

Gorsuch, not so much so now they have to deal with a man who has a voting record on voting by the constitution and how the law was written and not how HE personally feel the law says or interject his beliefs into any rulings and that scares Dems to their inner core.

Right again. Democrats are unhappy that this guy is sitting on the bench since the GOP denied Obama his legitimate choice. But it's over now and we're moving on.

“This is the latest escalation in the left’s never-ending judicial war, the most audacious yet, and it cannot and will not stand,” McConnell said.

The GOP had a pretty good propaganda machine on this one, and in the end it wasn't too hard for them to pull it off because of the technical nature of the process, and they knew their base would know little about it and they could use this ignorance to their advantage.

It started with McConnell's declaration that the Senate will continue to follow, "The Biden Rule," a completely made up reference to a speech Biden made in 1992. And, apparently, that the Senate was "following." The conflation: The GOP tells their base that Democrats have had the same view and they are hypocrites. Technical: Biden was a guy giving a speech. The GOP adopted this as a party platform and actually changed the rules. And "continuing" is obviously disingenuous and they know this, but their base does not, so they chose that word safely.

They reinforced the "just doing the same thing" angle by conflating the nuclear rule for appellate court justices that the Dems used and the one for the Supreme Court the GOP used. The Democrat's specifically put in language to not include Supreme Court justices. Although they could have. And perhaps, should have.

Their base has been fed a steady stream of after-the-fact statements meant to make them think they are engaging in a real debate. A lot of the right wingers talk about how Garland wasn't a good choice without realizing that it's a moot point in the context of Obama being denied his legitimate pick. He's the Democrat's choice. And your process from beginning to end was nothing more than a straight-up, undemocratic power grab.

Now that the nuclear option has been used the narrative is about how the nasty Democrats forced the GOP to do this. With a heavy heart, they reluctantly voted to change the rules. It must be a difficult decision for them, especially after denying Obama's right to choose. Which I keep saying in hopes it will sink into right-winger's heads.

And once again from the top: The GOP denied Obama his nomination by claiming a sitting president doesn't have the right to choose, only the next president does. Just want to make sure we're still on the same page.

This is made possible by the partnership between the ring-wing media and right-wing politicians, working together to create policy, then selling it to the masses. The number of incorrect statements I've heard from right-wingers about this is just astounding. You explain to them that Obama was denied his choice and their response is that, "Eh, Garland wasn't that good anyway." It's all mixed up in their head as to what technically happened. By design.

There's still one more big nuclear option, which to to eliminate filibusters in the Senate. There's a lot of pressure on GOP leadership to do away with that, too. I think McConnell gave the SC justice to the hardliners so he can keep the Senate filibuster in place. Despite calls from his party to go nuclear on it, he's stayed pretty consistent in saying NO. That should also give you an idea of how not all nuclear options are the same.

But who knows, maybe the Dems will get in power again in the mid-terms and can use the nuclear option themselves in the Senate. It's pretty much on the table now. Oh, and it's a Republican idea, Republicans have done it too, Republicans agree, and we only do this as a last option (despite having other choices). The script is pretty much there if they want it.

But I don't think they will, and I'd rather they didn't.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Dear Kentucky,

Thanks a lot. You have given us one of the most craven hypocrites to ever grace the floor of the Senate.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Well, yeah...heh. The Republicans came up with a new rule that a sitting president doesn't have the right to choose the Supreme Court justice, only the next president does. I think you can understand why Democrats would be upset. It was our turn to choose, and so the GOP changed the rules to take our choice away and gave it to themselves. That isn't a change that benefits America or Americans, it was a choice to help their own party at the expense of moderates and liberals all over America.

Seriously, don't even use that excuse, you guys just look ridiculous. I should give you a long list of Dems blocking or not give a hearing to any of nominees or even bringing and ignoring legislation to the floor, please don't go there.

Right again. Democrats are unhappy that this guy is sitting on the bench since the GOP denied Obama his legitimate choice. But it's over now and we're moving on.

Get over it, Garland was too much of a moderate and the GOP wanted a REAL Conservative to replace the late Scalia, their right, their choice. If the Dems want to sit in the corner and cry, they have enough money to buy crates of tissue.

The GOP had a pretty good propaganda machine on this one, and in the end it wasn't too hard for them to pull it off because of the technical nature of the process, and they knew their base would know little about it and they could use this ignorance to their advantage.

Just like the Dems kept their liberal base in the dark and used scare tactics and propaganda to gin them up and oppose Gorsuch? Good job.

It started with McConnell's declaration that the Senate will continue to follow, "The Biden Rule," a completely made up reference to a speech Biden made in 1992. And, apparently, that the Senate was "following." The conflation: The GOP tells their base that Democrats have had the same view and they are hypocrites. Technical: Biden was a guy giving a speech. The GOP adopted this as a party platform and actually changed the rules. And "continuing" is obviously disingenuous and they know this, but their base does not, so they chose that word safely.

No, they basically thought, the Dems are just a self-centered bunch, we all know if the roles were reversed they would have taken the same action and after what Reid did over the last 8 years, there is no doubt in my mind that would have been the outcome were the Dems in power. Nice try. They reinforced the "just doing the same thing" angle by conflating the nuclear rule for appellate court justices that the Dems used and the one for the Supreme Court the GOP used. The Democrat's specifically put in language to not include Supreme Court justices. Although they could have. And perhaps, should have.

Their base has been fed a steady stream of after-the-fact statements meant to make them think they are engaging in a real debate. A lot of the right wingers talk about how Garland wasn't a good choice without realizing that it's a moot point in the context of Obama being denied his legitimate pick.

He wasn't a good choice for the GOP at least NOT conservative enough.

Now that the nuclear option has been used the narrative is about how the nasty Democrats forced the GOP to do this. With a heavy heart, they reluctantly voted to change the rules. It must be a difficult decision for them, especially after denying Obama's right to choose. Which I keep saying in hopes it will sink into right-winger's heads.

And once again from the top: The GOP denied Obama his nomination by claiming a sitting president doesn't have the right to choose, only the next president does. Just want to make sure we're still on the same page.

He has every right, so do the GOP and they chose not to go ahead with a moderate, their right.

This is made possible by the partnership between the ring-wing media and right-wing politicians, working together to create policy, then selling it to the masses. The number of incorrect statements I've heard from right-wingers about this is just astounding. You explain to them that Obama was denied his choice and their response is that, "Eh, Garland wasn't that good anyway." It's all mixed up in their head as to what technically happened. By design.

So that's a bad thing as opposed to George Soros being the moneyman mastermind, the puppet master.

But who knows, maybe the Dems will get in power again in the mid-terms and can use the nuclear option themselves in the Senate.

And from now on it will go tit for tat. The Dems got their wish. I too, had hoped the Dems would come to their senses, but that's like asking a hornet to make honey.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

And above is the result of when the GOP and right-wing media team up to capitalize on the ignorance of their base.

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Gorsuch for end of the filibuster, acceptable trade off I say.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

And above is the result of when the GOP and right-wing media team up to capitalize on the ignorance of their base.

Comments like that coming from the left once again shows how their hypocrisy seems to bypass their own eyes.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

Vindictive hypocritical cowards are the GOP.

And what were the democrats when they changed the filibuster rules? Funny that when two parties do the exact same thing, you support one, and call the other "hypocritical cowards." Let's to forget that it was the democrats who set the precedent, which makes them the worse of the two evils, right?

Why did the democrats change the filibuster rule? Because they thought that they would hold the white house in the general election, and eventually take back the house and senate. But their plan blew up in their faces. That is not the fault of the "hypocritical cowards", it is their own fault.

As for the republicans not allowing Garland to be heard, the exact same thing would have happened if the tables had been turned, and a republican president was trying to appoint a new justice with a democrat majority in congress.

Who exactly is being a hypocrite here?

Back in the halcyon days of early 2008, Obama met with the GOP minority leaders in congress. The GOP expressed some concern with Obama's agenda, to which Obama cockily replied "Elections have consequences, and in the end, I won." I don't doubt that Obama regrets those words more than any others he spoke during his presidency, he had to eat more crow than Bush 1 did with after his infamous "read my lips" statement.

Elections do indeed have consequences, and when you lose your party's majorities in congress, and then the presidency itself, you cannot blame those who won, because if you had done a proper job, your party would have kept the presidency, and the congress.

It is not Trump's fault that he won, and that his party controls the congress, it is the democrat party's fault, because if they had done a good job, neither Trump nor his party would be running things, and Garland would have been the new justice.

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Right Sangatsu! It's like "well they already made things bad, so it's ok if we make things worse, right?"

Two wrongs always make a right. Everyone knows that.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

I am aware that by writing something that is not sympathetic to the Democratic Party in the JT commentary precincts will garner many thumbs down votes, but here goes...

I am neither a Republican nor a Democrat. I am not even a political person. But the hard truth in this matter is that when the Democrats controlled the US Senate early in the Obama administration, they changed the rules for appointees to all of the federal circuit courts from a 60 vote majority to a simple majority (with the sole exception of the US Supreme Court). In doing so, the Democratic Party stacked the lower courts with a plethora of judges that will serve life terms. The GOP's recent action extended the Democratic Party's rule change to the one remaining court that had still required 60 votes. I am not commenting on the wisdom of either party's actions, but rather injecting a non-partisan perspective into the conversation.

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I am neither a Republican nor a Democrat. I am not even a political person. But the hard truth in this matter is that when the Democrats controlled the US Senate early in the Obama administration, they changed the rules for appointees to all of the federal circuit courts from a 60 vote majority to a simple majority (with the sole exception of the US Supreme Court). In doing so, the Democratic Party stacked the lower courts with a plethora of judges that will serve life terms. The GOP's recent action extended the Democratic Party's rule change to the one remaining court that had still required 60 votes. I am not commenting on the wisdom of either party's actions, but rather injecting a non-partisan perspective into the conversation.

Perfect analysis, knocked it out of the ball park! 110% agreed!

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

If the Republicans were complaining about what the democrats did while changing the requirement for lower courts back to 60%, they would have a basis to complain. But whining about what the democrats did, while simultaneously doing worse, doesn't endear any sympathy. It just makes them look bad.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

But the hard truth in this matter is that when the Democrats controlled the US Senate early in the Obama administration, they changed the rules for appointees to all of the federal circuit courts from a 60 vote majority to a simple majority (with the sole exception of the US Supreme Court).

With the exception of the US Supreme Court. One might say that's a difference here. The Democrats specifically included language to exclude the Supreme Court.

sangetsu: As for the republicans not allowing Garland to be heard, the exact same thing would have happened if the tables had been turned, and a republican president was trying to appoint a new justice with a democrat majority in congress.

The Democrats have never done that. They've never taken the position, as a party, that only the next president has the right to choose the Supreme Court justice. That's new GOP territory.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

But whining about what the democrats did, while simultaneously doing worse, doesn't endear any sympathy. It just makes them look bad.

Having a senator like Harry Reid would make even the dead whiny. Now the shoe is on the other foot and the Dems are the whiniest bunch since....can't even remember. At this rate, we just might start running out of trees to make all these tissues for them.

The Democrats have never done that.

But given the chance they would.

They've never taken the position, as a party, that only the next president has the right to choose the Supreme Court justice. That's new GOP territory.

We never had a president like the last one that went through congress hopping over them pass any legislation by executive order and we never had Dems go off the rails and lose it to the point of being certifiable.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

REP are like little kids. Not having it the way they want? Take your ball and go home.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

bass:. But given the chance they would.

They had the chance, and did not, specifically carving out the Supreme Court. They've also had the chance to unilaterally decide that only the next president can choose a nominee, but never have.

Two differences between the two parties.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

I watched him tenaciously grilled by both Republicans and demmlvfatic and he gave answers. He is not a rubber stamp he said and he gain more Dem suppogders. Some dem flip flopped.

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As a former lifelong Republican, let me say that there will be a payback. Everything that has been bought will be paid for.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

SuperLib - With the exception of the US Supreme Court. One might say that's a difference here. The Democrats specifically included language to exclude the Supreme Court.

That's a good point. The Democrats chose to exclude Supreme Court nominees when they chose to change the rule for all other federal judges in 2013. Why? It's obvious that Reid and some Democrats must have believed that keeping the filibuster in place was important. It just wasn't that important. The filibuster had gotten in the way of the Democrats agenda and it had to be removed.

Now, the Democrat's supporters are scurrying around the internet complaining that the Republicans finished the job that the Democrats started. Oh, and referencing something called "Calvinball". Are all Democrats following orders from the same playbook, or master?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

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