Tags: Donald Trump | Supreme Court | judge | Neil Gorsuch | independence | John Barrasso

Sen. Barrasso: Gorsuch Will Be an Independent Justice

(CNN/YouTube)

By    |   Thursday, 09 Feb 2017 03:06 PM

While the Trump administration insisted Thursday that reports that Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch's comments concerning attacks on judges were misconstrued, Sen. John Barrasso said the comments mean to him the Colorado judge is showing his independence.

"It says to me that everybody ought to vote for Neil Gorsuch for the Supreme Court, because it shows how independent he is," the Wyoming Republican told CNN's Wolf Blitzer. "Not only is he highly qualified and mainstream, he's independent. I briefly visited with him this morning as he was heading to Sen. Susan Collins' office. He's going to be a terrific member of the Supreme Court. I support him all the way."

Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., said Gorsuch had told him Wednesday he found President Donald Trump's tweets about federal Judge James Robart "disheartening and demoralizing," and Blumenthal doubled down on the claims Thursday. He was backed up by Sen. Ben Sasse, R-Neb., who also said Gorsuch had expressed his thoughts when specifically asked about the tweets.

However, former Sen. Kelly Ayotte, who is aiding in the confirmation process, said Gorsuch was not talking about the tweets specifically, and press secretary Sean Spicer insisted during Thursday's White House press briefing Gorsuch made it clear he was not commenting on specific cases.

At any rate, Barrasso said, he personally does not speak for Trump, but he will speak for himself, and he is "delighted" Gorsuch has been nominated.

"He is a guy that understands that the Constitution is where we need to be," the Wyoming senator said. "He is somebody that is going to apply the law, not try to rewrite or re-create the law. So, I'm with him all the way."

Blumenthal said Thursday that Gorsuch told him to "feel free" to use his comments publicly, and Barrasso said that also increases the nominee's credibility.

Barrasso also defended Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., after Trump blasted him on Twitter for his criticism about a Navy SEAL raid in Yemen, in which Chief Petty Officer William "Ryan" Owens died.

"[McCain] is a man of courage, of character and credibility," Barrasso said. "I've traveled the world with him. No matter where I am with him – we've been in Iraq, Afghanistan, Ukraine – no matter where I am, people come up, thank him for his service and heroism. People around the world know about the work of John McCain, and continue to look to him for leadership, specifically on issues about military and national security."

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While the Trump administration insisted Thursday that reports that Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch's comments concerning attacks on judges were misconstrued, Sen. John Barrasso said the comments mean to him the Colorado judge is showing his independence.
judge, Neil Gorsuch, independence, John Barrasso
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2017-06-09
Thursday, 09 Feb 2017 03:06 PM
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