Our "Political Insiders" are divided along party lines when it comes to the nomination of Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court.
President Donald Trump nominated Gorsuch to fill the seat left empty following the death of Justice Antonin Scalia last year.
The Republicans on our panel mostly like Gorsuch's nomination. 43% of the Republicans who responded to our survey called the pick "a slam dunk," while another 43% said it was "solid." Only 6% of the Republicans said Trump could have done better while 3% disagreed with the pick.
Democrats are not happy with the pick, with none of those who responded agreeing that Gorsuch's nomination is "a slam dunk." Only 38% of Democrats said it was a solid pick.
54% of our Democratic panelists said Trump could have done better with the nomination or that they hate the pick. That's not surprising given that Republicans in the Senate refused to consider President Barack Obama's selection of Merrick Garland to fill the seat, opting to keep the seat open until a new president could make a choice.
Selected anonymous comments:
"Gorsuch said it was wrong in 2002 when Garland and Roberts were waiting to be confirmed. If anyone should get a fair hearing, it is Gorsuch."
"I'm very concerned that he will support the involvement of religion in government and women's reproductive health choices. Letting "Christian" beliefs influence our government can lead us to problems similar to countries with an Islamist influence on their government."
"Although I prefer moderates who you aren't sure which way they will pick, he can't be right of Scalia, so it works for me. And he seems to have a little bit of humor so he can't be too bad."
"I spent the better part of the past week in an absolute rage at the sheer inanity, short-sightedness, and cowardice displayed by Mr. Trump in the issuance of his executive orders concerning immigration. While I am still not satisfied with him as the president, the nomination of Judge Gorsuch has at least calmed me down. This judge has all the qualities that a supreme court justice should have, and the Senate should give him bipartisan approval. Any battle should be saved for a future nominee that might change the balance of power on the high court."
"I didn't vote for Trump, but I give him a boatload of credit for this pick. Well done, sir!"
"Originalism is not suitable for 2017. It is a sham behind which corporate America defends its profitability."
"We need a balance in the Supreme Court. If the majority are conservative, who is going to equally represent those who are underserved and in the minority?"
"Trump would never have picked him, but Merrick Garland was an excellent choice. Republicans played a dirty game by refusing to have a hearing for Garland."
"Yes, he is a great replacement for Scalia. Moderate, but not tea-party, and he has an impeccable record."
"Great solid pick. The Democrats are going to throw everything they have at him, but in the end, they know he will be the next Justice."
"As a liberal-leaning moderate, he's got a consistent record albeit with a couple of questionable aspects for my taste. Better than expected truth be told! Still, on principle, he shouldn't be confirmed. The politicization of appointments is wrong, and each nomination should be assessed on individual merits. Until Merrick Garland is given a hearing and either found unqualified or appointed, Neil Gorsuch can wait."
"I'm sorry he didn't pick Utah Senator Mike Lee, but he seems like a fine jurist."
"He's what I expected, but I'm disappointed all the same. Moreover, I wouldn't be surprised if the Dems apply to Trump's pick the same cold shoulder that the Reps gave to Obama's pick. We're in for a very rough four years - or less."
"I think anyone who doesn't believe Mr. Garland who was nominated by Barack Obama should already be sitting on the Supreme Court is a treasonous SOB. No one Trump chooses will be a legitimate Justice, and everyone knows it."
"I think that Mike Lee's fetishistic glee over this choice should make everyone pay attention to the worst case scenarios outcomes of so many important constitutional issues. Based on Lee's inability to contain his giggling, I guess we can say goodbye to child labor laws, and hello to easier short sales and hyperbolic opinions."
"President Obama nominated a mainstream person, and his nomination was ignored based on some real flimsy logic. President Trump's nomination is not mainstream but very very conservative and in light of how President Obama's pick was treated, a poke in the eye. It shows that President Trump does not represent all the people nor care about them."
"Mr. Gorsuch seems to be a solid pick. He has the intellectual, educational and experiential chops, but one thing...He's a conservative. Also, there is still one specter going to haunt Mr. Gorshuch's nomination: Merrick Garland and why his nomination process was ignored by a Republican Controlled Senate. The Democrats in the Senate and maybe some Republicans who felt shut out by not giving Mr. Garland his due may provide some push-back on Mr. Gorsuch's confirmation. Between the sour grapes from the Democrats and angst from some (or many) Republicans for President Trumps very eventful first weeks in office, these confirmation hearings will be high drama (kind of like the Bachelor). Are there no more statesmen left in Washington? OH, MY HECK!"
"I think Democrats should oppose anyone he proposes, just as the Republicans did for President Obama's pick."
"Seems the makeup of the court will be about the same as it was a year ago. No big change, no big surprise, no big deal."
"He is a very good pick for the Court and to replace Scalia. The Dems will throw fits and do everything they can to block him, but eventually, he gets confirmed and the Court can get away from 4-4 decisions."
"Democrats will have a hard time gaining any serious traction on blocking this nominee. They will probably test the waters and eventually back off before the Republicans do away with the filibuster completely."
"Not as bad as it could have been."
"Beautiful pick! Liberals will fight and lose, and it will make it all that much sweeter. It will only get better when Ginsburg kicks the bucket and we get Mike Lee on the court."
"Bright, young, conservative. What else could you ask for in a jurist?"
"He will have some struggles to get confirmed given the deep divide in the Senate. I think a more moderate pick would have been a wiser choice and use that as a means for healing the divide."
"Thank God he won't be in Denver anymore."