Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch begins Senate confirmation hearing

By Bonnie K. Goodman, BA, MLIS

President Donald Trump’s nominee for the Supreme Court, Neil Gorsuch is finally having his confirmation hearing. Gorsuch’s hearing in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee began Monday morning, March 20, 2017. Trump nominated the conservative judge to replace Justice Antonin Scalia, who died last February.

Sen. Chuck Grassley, chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, gave an opening statement to the hearing praising the nominee’s career. Grassley expressed, “Fortunately for every American; we have before us today a nominee whose body of professional work is defined by an unfailing commitment to these principles. His grasp on the separation of powers – including judicial independence -enlivens his body of work.”

Continuing his praise, the Senate Judiciary Committee said, “The nominee before us understands that any judge worth his salt will ‘regularly issue judgments with which they disagree as a matter of policy – all because they think that’s what the law fairly demands.'”

Currently, Gorsuch, 49 is a “judge on the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver.” Longtime Conservative Gorsuch is a graduate of Columbia University and Harvard Law School, and he has a doctorate in legal philosophy from Oxford University. Afterward, he clerked for First for Judge David B. Sentelle of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, and then Supreme Court justices, Anthony M. Kennedy and Byron R. White, who retired in 1993.

Republicans consider Gorsuch, the perfect conservative candidate to fill Scalia’s seat on the bench as he shares Scalia’s legal views, textualism, and originalism. Gorsuch believes in “religious liberties” and “the First Amendment’s free exercise clause, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.” In the Burwell v. Hobby Lobby and Little Sisters of the Poor cases, Gorsuch sided with the religious groups reasoning aspects of the Affordable Care Act cannot be forced on religious organizations if it is against the belief. The Senate confirmation hearing will last a week.

Source: ABC News Radio Online

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