Facts about Justice Neil Gorsuch and the Supreme Court

Posted April 16, 2017

To ensure his nomination would be approved, Senate Republicans voted for a rule change that essentially removed the need for bipartisan compromise over any future nominee.

But as an acolyte of Scalia whose rulings have skewed conservative on most issues, Gorsuch picked up almost unanimous opposition from Democrats and their liberal allies, who were willing to give up filibuster rights now rather than waiting for a potential second Trump nomination.

Republicans defended the rule change by arguing Democrats were waging the first "partisan filibuster" of a Supreme Court nominee and were signaling they wouldn't back any Republican nominee.

Gorsuch, 49, was a member of the Colorado-based 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. And as much as Trump and many Republicans seem to see Gorsuch's confirmation to the Court as a victory, the event is embroiled in controversy.

In his remarks in the Rose Garden, Gorsuch said he felt humbled by being called to serve on the nation's highest court and he told his former law clerks he was grateful for their service. In a historic first, Justice Anthony Kennedy administered the oath to his former clerk.

"And I got it done in the first 100 days", Mr Trump quipped at a ceremony in the White House Rose Garden.

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"As a deep believer in the rule of law, Judge Gorsuch will serve the American people with distinction as he continues to faithfully and vigorously defend our Constitution", he said after his confirmation.

Regarding the April 5 news article "With Gorsuch nomination, Senate seems poised to kill a tradition": The Republican power play in the Senate to elect Neil Gorsuch shows that honor and collegiality and plain fairness are no match for their lust for power.

And he can begin shaping the court's caseload, providing yet another vote for which cases the justices will hear.

Gorsuch will also be casting a vote in another significant case which pits religious liberty against LGBT rights. "But if Justice Gorsuch were indeed the fourth vote in favor of a grant, then the case could be granted". The president is predicting Gorsuch will go down as "one of the truly great justices" in the court's history.

Kennedy, 80, is now the longest serving justice.

That could mean one or more justices are writing dissents from the court's decision against hearing the case, or that the justices are waiting for Gorsuch's views on the matter. He joins a court that has five Catholics and three Jews. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell at the time refused to consider Garland's nomination because of the proximity to the presidential election.