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Friday, March 24, 2017

End of the Week Gorsuch Update

After a week of fairly quiet hearings, the next steps for the Gorsuch confirmation aren't totally clear to me. It doesn't appear that they've set a date for the vote yet; the Republicans are going to have murky waters to navigate. Schumer says the Democrats are going to filibuster Gorsuch, which means he believes he has more than 40 votes against Gorsuch.

The Republicans could go "nuclear" -- eliminating the filibuster for Supreme Court nominees, but conservatives have always been the least likely to want to get rid of it, since they've been in the Senate minority more often than not and often function better in the minority. As a result, they very well might not have the votes to change the Senate filibuster rules.

I'm not as convinced as I was a week or two ago that Gorsuch is getting through, particularly if the healthcare bill passes or the Russia scandal continues to snowball, because if the Republicans become even a little less likely to support Trump (like three votes in the Senate less likely), they're going to have a hard time finding the votes to invoke the "nuclear option."

Looks like that's it on Gorsuch until Monday; the Democrats did pretty well, given the circumstances.

I'll be back with more on the AHCA in the late afternoon after the 3:30 vote (or lack of it).

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