Confirmation hearings begin for Supreme Court nominee

Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley opened with an alert for the nominee. On this week's episode, we put that question to Sen.

Gorsuch left behind a partisan gulf as he finished day one.

SEN. SHELDON WHITEHOUSE, D-R.I.: Your record on corporate vs. human litigants comes in, by one count, at 21-2 for corporations. "Judge Gorsuch's jurisprudence reflects what every Westerner knows to be true: An intrusive federal government can interfere with the sovereign power of Western states to govern themselves", Flake said.

There's no question Gardner will support Gorsuch, a judge on the 10th Circuit in Denver, but Bennet has not tipped his hand.

"Judge Gorsuch's legal experience is well known".

"The Judiciary Committee once stood against a court-packing scheme that would have eroded judicial independence".

Democrats do not have enough votes, on their own, to scuttle the Gorsuch nomination, even if they could get organized in their opposition, which they likely cannot.

JUDY WOODRUFF: While Democrats knocked his constitutional philosophy as too rigid.

Democrats will also press Gorsuch on his role as a Justice Department lawyer under Bush from 2005 to 2006, when he helped defend controversial policies enacted after the September 11, 2001 attacks, including the administration's expansive use of aggressive interrogation techniques.

"I have been authorized to confirm that the FBI is investigating the Russian government's efforts to interfere in the 2016 presidential election", said Comey.

SEN. MIKE LEE, R-Utah: Referring to you as an originalist just doesn't stick.

Overall, the first day of testimony underscored that the hearings would remain sharply divided along party lines, with each senator accusing the opposing side of political posturing. His seat has now been vacant for more than a year. Arizona was represented on the committee by Sen. Senate rules and tradition dictate the rest.

First, Democrats are still angry about Judge Merrick Garland.

"Two wrongs never make a right", he told the committee.

"The nominee before us is not President Trump". You will scratch your head when you hear this, because it's as if you judges write the laws instead of us senators.

But he will be voting on Gorsuch when the nomination comes before the full Senate.

Gorsuch promised in his opening statement Monday to be a "neutral and independent" justice.

Republican Ted Cruz said there is no reason for Gorsuch to be questioned about Trump, noting that previous nominees have not had to speak about allegations made against the Presidents who nominated them.

If I thought that were true, I would hang up the robe.

Progressives have pushed Democrats to reject Gorsuch.

Gorsuch has not participated in a major ruling on abortion, but Democrats are aiming to cast his views on that issues and others as outside the mainstream.

  • Joanne Flowers