Top Senate Democrat Chuck Schumer said he hopes Gorsuch has listened to "our concerns about the Supreme Court increasingly drifting toward becoming a more pro-corporate court that favors employers, corporations and special interests over working America". Manchin is one of three moderate Democrats up for re-election in states Trump won last fall who voted with the Republicans. Johnny Isakson, R-Ga., who is recovering from recent back surgeries, was absent. It came as a victory for Trump, who pledged to appoint another committed person to succeed Justice Antonin Scalia during his campaign appeal a year ago. Republicans blocked Barack Obama from filling the seat all previous year.
Judge Gorsuch may be qualified to sit on the high court, but he is on the verge of elevation only because of the rank political maneuvering of McConnell and his Republican colleagues in the Senate.
Republicans exulted in the victory.
After he is sworn in, Gorsuch will restore the court's conservative voting majority that existed before Scalia's death. You're on the Supreme Court.More news: Uber to Be Required to Offering In-App Tipping in NYC
A final confirmation vote on Gorsuch is expected Friday and he could then be sworn in in time to take his seat on the court later this month and hear the final cases of the term.
In this case, it allows the Senate to change the number of votes needed to confirm a Supreme Court nominee to a simple majority of 51 instead of a super majority of 60. "In fact, I am confident we will", said Sen.
For many conservatives, Trump's choice of Gorsuch made up for any number of other weaknesses in his candidacy and his administration.
The maneuvering played out in an atmosphere of tension in the Senate chamber with most senators in their seats, a rare and theatrical occurrence.More news: Mobile, Dish, Comcast among largest buyers in FCC auction
But that evaluation of Gorsuch wouldn't have guaranteed confirmation if not for McConnell's move Thursday to change Senate rules, invoking the so-called "nuclear option," by removing the ability of Democrats to filibuster the nomination.
The 49-year-old judge from Colorado was officially promoted to the lifetime appointment by a 54-45 vote after Senate Republicans voted to change the rules requiring at least 60 votes for a confirmation.
McConnell was overruled, but he appealed the ruling.
A conservative-majority court is more likely to support gun rights, abortion regulations, an expansive view of religious liberty and Republican-backed voting restrictions, while opposing curbs on political spending. Michael Bennet (D-CO), representing Gorsuch's home state, voted against his fellow Coloradan. That unusual external review omitted consultation with Senate Democrats, contributing to bitter Democrat complaints about the way the whole process was handled. And yet in many ways the showdown had been pre-ordained, the final chapter in years of partisan warfare over judicial nominees. The court did not give a time for the White House event.More news: Gretzky buzzing over McDavid, Matthews' NHL playoff debuts