President Donald Trump pleased conservatives by nominating Neil Gorsuch to fill the Supreme Court vacancy resulting from the 2016 death of Justice Antonin Scalia. Gorsuch has served on the Denver-based 10th Circuit Court of Appeals since 2006.
The 49-year-old Judge Gorsuch is the son of the late Reagan EPA Director Anne Gorsuch. He is known for his strong stances on religious liberty and the right to life.
The current Supreme Court is deadlocked 4-4 among Democrat and Republican appointees. All decisions made since Justice Scalia’s death have reverted back to the prior federal appeals court decisions.
If confirmed by the Senate, Gorsuch would become the youngest member of the Supreme Court. Justice Elana Kagan is currently the youngest member at the age of 56. Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg is the oldest member at 83.
Republicans hold a 52-48 majority in the Senate. Conventional procedures call for 60 Senators to call for a vote on Supreme Court nominees. To date, 7 Democrat Senators have said that they favor a vote on Judge Gorsuch. Twelve Democrat Senators who are up for re-election in 2018 are in states which were carried by President Trump.