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Monday, 20 March 2017 19:00

Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch’s first day of hearings featured glowing assessments from Republicans and vows of scrutiny from Democrats

Written by  Robert Barnes

Judge Neil Gorsuch promised to remember the “modest station we judges are meant to occupy in a democracy” if he is elevated to the nation’s highest court, as the hearing on his Supreme Court nomination began Monday amidst Democratic doubts about his impartiality and lingering resentment over the circumstances of his selection.

The day followed a familiar confirmation hearing script — glowing assessments from senators of the party whose president made the nomination, vows of scrutiny from senators out of power and a humble, deferential opening statement from the nominee.

But there was a sharp-edged difference as well. Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee made clear they are not over the decision of their Republican colleagues to keep open the seat held by the late Justice Antonin Scalia in order for President Trump to fill it.

And rarely has there been such a demand that a Supreme Court nominee declare his independence from the president who nominated him.

“You're going to have your hands full with this president. He's going to keep you busy,” Sen. Richard J. Durbin (D-Ill.) told Gorsuch.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and Vice President Mike Pence met with Neil Gorsuch, President Trump's nominee for the Supreme Court , in February. Read more at WashingtonPost

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