Tags: mitch mcconnell | nuclear | option | gorsuch

Mitch McConnell: Nuclear Option on Gorsuch Up to Dems

Image: Mitch McConnell: Nuclear Option on Gorsuch Up to Dems

Neil Gorsuch makes remarks as President Donald Trump listens. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

By    |   Monday, 03 Apr 2017 10:23 AM

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said whether he will use the so-called "nuclear option" to get Judge Neil Gorsuch confirmed to the U.S. Supreme Court this week is up to Democrats.

"We’re going to get Judge Gorsuch confirmed this week," McConnell told "Fox News Sunday."

Doing so would require eight Democratic senators to join the 52 Republican senators in voting to confirm President Donald Trump's nominee. Failing that, McConnell could use the nuclear option and change Senate rules to get Gorsuch confirmed on a simple 51-vote majority, rather than 60 votes.

"We’ll know through the course of the week," McConnell told "Fox News Sunday." "It’s in the hands of Democrats."

Republicans are crying foul about the possibility of a filibuster to block Gorsuch, saying such a move has never been made throughout history, The Associated Press reported.

However, the AP pointed out that "partisanship has denied a Supreme Court seat to a number of nominees, most recently former President Barack Obama's choice for the court last year."

Obama's nomination of Merrick Garland to fill the seat vacated by the death of conservative Associate Justice Antonin Scalia was blocked by Republicans who declined to give him a hearing. While not technically the same as a partisan filibuster Gorsuch could face, Sen. Angus King, I-Maine, called the blocking of Garland the "granddaddy of filibusters," according to the AP.

Republicans have argued that Democrats have used parliamentary tactics to block lower court judges during Obama's administration.

McConnell's recent comments to Fox News echo what he told CNN's Jake Tapper in February. McConnell said at the time that he's "confident we will get 60 votes," but he hadn't taken the nuclear option off the table, saying "I would say that is up to our Democratic friends."

Sen Bernie Sanders said the "nuclear option" is "absolutely unacceptable."

Twitter users had mixed opinions about the possible use of the "nuclear option."

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Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said whether he will use the so-called "nuclear option" to get Judge Neil Gorsuch confirmed to the U.S. Supreme Court this week is up to Democrats.
mitch mcconnell, nuclear, option, gorsuch
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2017-23-03
Monday, 03 Apr 2017 10:23 AM
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