In a move that is destined to come back to haunt the Republican Party, Senate Republicans used the nuclear option to confirm Trump Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch, but in the process, they took away one of their own tools of obstruction.
The vote to confirm Gorsuch was 54-45.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s changing of the rules to get Neil Gorsuch confirmed by a simple majority vote was a short-sighted trade. McConnell is gambling that there will be future vacancies open on the Supreme Court during Trump’s term and that Republicans will maintain control of the Senate. However, after 2018, the Senate map becomes hostile to Republicans in upcoming elections, which means that Republicans could very well lose the Senate, and their power to obstruct future Democratic nominees.
After watching Senate Republicans obstruct Barack Obama for nearly two full terms, anything that gets rid of future Republican obstruction is a trade worth making. McConnell made have swapped a Supreme Court justice that doesn’t change the balance of the court for giving Senate Democrats the power to confirm future liberal Supreme Court justices without a single Republican vote.
Republicans were desperate to give Trump a win, and if McConnell’s luck runs out, the cost of getting Neil Gorsuch confirmed maybe years of liberal Supreme Court justices.
Senate Republicans sold out their future to get Gorsuch confirmed, which means that they won the battle, but Democrats won the war to dismantle the tools of future Republican obstruction.
Mr. Easley is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association