Senate Democrat leader says Trump court nominee to face filibuster

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Senate Democrats aren’t planning to make confirmation easy for Donald Trump’s Supreme Court pick.

Charles Schumer, the New York lawmaker who leads the Senate Democrats, said on Twitter Thursday that the nomination “will face a cloture vote & as I’ve said, he will have to earn sixty votes for confirmation” — suggesting that Democrats, who are the Senate’s minority party, will filibuster, forcing Republicans to find 60 votes to end the procedural blockade and move forward to a final vote on the nominee, Neil Gorsuch.

The Republicans currently hold 52 seats in the Senate, while Democrats hold 46 and two seats are held by independents.

Mr Gorsuch, who currently sits on the 10th US Circuit Court of Appeals, was nominated earlier this year by Mr Trump to fill a seat vacated by the death of Antonin Scalia. He faced tough grilling during his confirmation hearing, which began earlier this week, but emerged largely unscathed.

Some Democrats have railed against the selection of Mr Gorsuch in part because Senate Republicans blocked a vote on Merrick Garland, the nominee put forward by Mr Trump’s predecessor, Barack Obama.

The Senate Judiciary Committee is scheduled to vote on Mr Gorsuch’s nomination on April 3. If he is advanced, he will then face a vote by the full Senate.

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