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21 March 2017, 11:29 | Gladys Abbott
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Based on watching parts of the hearing and reading a number of stories, here's just a quick post about Day One of the confirmation hearings of federal appeals court judge Neil Gorsuch to be Antonin Scalia's successor on the United States Supreme Court. Assuming he ultimately gets approved by the Senate, there are few individuals who will have as direct and immediate impact on what your credit union can and can't do for decades to come.
On Tuesday President Trump will address House Republicans in advance of their vote on the American Health Care Act (AHCA). "So, Judge Gorsuch, we need to know what's in your heart". "President Trump is using Gorsuch to elevate his extreme agenda with a lifetime appointment to our nation's highest court", the groups wrote.
The committee, which began confirmation hearings Monday, is slated to vote on his nomination by April 3.
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.
Republican senators disputed the Democratic criticism.
Gorsuch's comments came after almost four hours of opening statements by the Senators on the committee and responded to Democratic concerns that he often sides with corporations at the expense of individuals.
US Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch can expect some tough scrutiny at his Senate confirmation hearing.
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Several committee Democrats, including Dianne Feinstein of California, lamented that Gorsuch was not Obama's nominee, Merrick Garland, and Patrick Leahy of Vermont said he was picked by "special interest" groups.
Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley, chairman of the committee, said Gorsuch's record demonstrates "an unfailing commitment" to the "constitutional order and the separation of powers". "And I think judges from the west have a better understanding of that". After the event with senators and progressives in front of the court last week, volunteers and staff delivered petitions with over a million signatures, they said, urging senators from both parties to oppose Gorsuch's nomination. "The Supreme Court is too important for us not to find a way to end our destructive gridlock and bitter partisanship".
At the same time, Grassley tries to head off expected Democratic arguments that Gorsuch often ruled in favor of corporate plaintiffs.
Theresa Wardon, who clerked for Gorsuch from 2008 to 2009, told me it's "inconceivable" that Gorsuch would "ever believe those things or say them in front of a class".
"I am deeply disappointed that it is under these circumstances that we begin these hearings", Feinstein said. Grassley wrapped up his statement by directly addressing Gorsuch.
Former Obama administration acting Solicitor General Neal Katyal, a Georgetown Law professor, also spoke in support of Gorsuch, calling him a "first-rate intellect and a fair and decent man" who had a "dedication to the rule of law".
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