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Trump's Supreme Court Pick: Neil Gorsuch


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The hearings start on Monday. Well, Tuesday really. Monday, the Judiciary Committee will essentially use a human being as a prop for about 10 hours worth of speeches. Seriously, they'll swear him in, give speeches all day, and send him home. The decent thing to do would be to dismiss him when they're not actually asking him questions, but then the cameras would turn off.

 

Still really no momentum to stop him. Last I checked, the big line of attack now was that he wasn't a friend of "the little guy", which seems to miss the point of judges. Barring a surprise, it's hard to see how a filibuster won't be easily overcome.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Well, well. Looks like the Democrats have coalesced around a filibuster. Not really much reason behind it, just the Garland nonsense that is perfectly in line with how both party have treated lame duck nominations since the 19th century and which they literally said they would do themselves on two occasions, but all the liberal writers start their pieces off with the notion that he was treated terribly somehow despite Democrats regularly distorting Republican nominations viciously and Republicans just saying they weren't going to confirm him and letting the matter drop.

 

Looks like we get the best of all worlds. The Democrats blocking a nominee for basically no reason. We get rid of the ridiculous ability to filibuster nominees. Republicans score a win and make the Democrats look powerless and petty.

 

And, best of all, Trump can pretty much nominate anyone he wants next time and Democrats will have destroyed the only speed bump they have on a lost cause that makes nuking the filibuster an easy call.

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A filibuster actually makes sense if the Dems know the GOP can get 60. Allows the more left-leaning senators in safe blue states a chance to do some grand-standing and playing to the base, without doing any real damage to red-state Dems up for re-election in 2018.

 

Of course, if the GOP doesn't have 60, then it's monumentally stupid, since the GOP will just end the filibuster and the Dems will have lost their best bargaining chip if one of the liberal judges need to be replaced in the next 4 years (or heck, if even Kennedy needs to be replaced).

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I figured it would be something like the Alito filibuster myself. Just a show for the base while the nominee safely gets through without drama. But there's already 30 Democrats who have committed themselves to a filibuster and only two that have said they won't support it. And word coming out is that leadership is actively working to keep the party in line. Here's who is left. Tell me which six might peel off.

 

Ben Cardin (MD)
Bob Menendez (NJ)
Brian E. Schatz (HI)
Catherine Cortez Masto (NV)
Chris Coons (DE)
Claire McCaskill (MO)
Dianne Feinstein (CA)
Joe Donnelly (IN)
Jon Tester (MT)
Maria Cantwell (WA)
Mark Warner (VA)
Michael Bennet (CO)
Patrick Leahy (VT)
Richard Blumenthal (CT)
Tammy Duckworth (IL)
Angus King (ME)

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Three guesses as to which Republican Senator is working to bail Democrats out of their hole and save the one-sided filibuster rule that the Democrats will dispatch without remorse or apology when they're in power (Reid and Kaine both literally said they would when they thought Clinton would win six months ago)?

 

 

You likely only need one. It's McCain.

 

 

Because, of course it'd be him and his grandstanding, spotlight hogging, selfish, Senate institutionalist idiocy. Without him we could have resolved this whole issue a dozen years ago and could have preserved the DC Circuit, 4th Circuit and probably 10 more seats that Obama filled instead.

 

Gah, when is that guy going to retire.

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Okay, so since the last time I looked, seven more Democrats have come out for the filibuster and only Joe Donnelly has been added to those that have decided to vote for Gorsuch.

 

That brings the number of Democrats filibustering to 37, just four short of where they need to be with 8 Senators remaining.

 

Cardin

Menendez

Coons

Leahy

Feinstein

Bennet

Warner

King

 

Five of those names have to announce that they're voting against he filibuster. The only way I see this playing out without nuking the filibuster is if Leahy and Feinstein play elder statesmen and vote for cloture. Coons looks like he wants to avoid a nuking, so he might. From there, some combination of King, Bennet, and Menendez seem like the best bet.

 

It's pretty tough though. It'll be hard for any Democrat to run in their primary if the filibuster falls just short and they provided the vote that let Gorsuch onto the court. It would have been much easier if it had played out like the Alito attempt where the votes weren't particularly close and the Senators could essentially vote for what was best for their careers.

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