Gorsuch Confirmed to U.S. Supreme Court

WASHINGTON, D.C. (Fox News) - The Senate confirmed Judge Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court on Friday, filling the critical ninth seat that has been vacant for over a year and capping a tumultuous debate that saw Republicans overhaul the way the chamber operates in order to overcome what they described as an unprecedented Democratic filibuster.

The 54-45 vote is expected to restore a 5-4 conservative tilt on the bench. Once sworn in, Gorsuch will join the court and begin to hear cases, in the seat once held by the late Justice Antonin Scalia, who died in February 2016.

“He’s going to make the American people proud,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said.

Republicans lauded Gorsuch as an eminently qualified jurist and a fitting successor to Scalia. But Democrats accused him of giving evasive answers during his confirmation hearing, and claimed his past rulings showed a tendency to favor business interests over workers. More broadly, Democrats remain furious that Republicans under McConnell’s leadership blocked consideration of former President Barack Obama’s nominee Merrick Garland, in turn allowing Trump to nominate Gorsuch.

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U.S. Senator Tom Cotton (R-Arkansas) released the following statement on the confirmation:
“Judge Gorsuch is now Justice Gorsuch, and I’m glad to see such a distinguished jurist raised to the highest court in the land. I believe he will be a fine addition to the Supreme Court.”

Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge also applauded the selection in a statement:
"I applaud the U.S. Senate, and specifically Arkansas Senators John Boozman and Tom Cotton, for confirming Judge Neil Gorsuch to the U.S. Supreme Court. Individuals on both the right and left have praised Judge Gorsuch, and it was made clear during his confirmation hearings that he would be a superb jurist who respects the rule of law and immensely values and understands that the judiciary must be independent. Judge Gorsuch is extremely qualified, and I congratulate him on his confirmation to the seat that was once held by the late Justice Antonin Scalia, a man he referred to as a 'lion on the law.'"

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