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Schumer says Democrats will filibuster Gorsuch nomination

Neil Gorsuch filibuster

Democrats plan to filibuster Neil Gorsuch’s nomination for the Supreme Court, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-New York) said Thursday.

Speaking on the Senate floor Thursday morning, Schumer said Gorsuch -- who is three days into his confirmation hearings with the Senate Judiciary Committee -- will need 60 votes to be confirmed. Currently, the Senate has 52 Republicans and 48 Democrats.

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“After careful deliberation, I have concluded that I cannot support judge Neil Gorsuch’s nomination to the Supreme Court,” he said. “His nomination will have a cloture vote. He will have to earn 60 votes for confirmation. My vote will be no, and I urge my colleagues to do the same.”

He said the Supreme Court may “get wonky and technical” but said “what is at stake … is not at all abstract.” Recent close decisions by the Supreme Court have decided everything from same-sex marriage to voting rights to health care to education, Schumer added.

Schumer also warned his Republican counterpart, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, against changing the Senate rules to prevent a filibuster.

“To my Republican friends who think that if Judge Gorsuch fails to reach 60 votes, we ought to change the rules, I say if this nominee cannot earn 60 votes, a bar met by each of President Obama’s nominees and George Bush’s last two nominees, the answer isn’t to change the rules,” he said. “It’s to change the nominee.”