Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY), cousin to “horribly unfunny” feminist comedian Amy Schumer, has said that he will filibuster Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch’s nomination in an attempt to oppose the Republican majority in Congress. Schumer made the pledge in the waning moments of Thursday’s confirmation hearing. The top-ranking Democratic senator has asked his colleagues in the donkey party to join him in blocking an up-or-down vote.
Schumer’s defiant rhetoric comes as Senate Republicans look to confirm President Trump’s nominee before the April 7 Easter recess. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConell and his counterparts in the upper chamber have asserted that they will push through the Gorsuch nomination by removing the filibuster option and forcing through lifetime court appointments with a simple majority if Democrats attempt to stonewall the confirmation process.
In order to override a filibuster, the 52-member Republican majority in the Senate would need to draw bipartisan support and consolidate a 60-vote supermajority.
Since Senate Republicans refused to hold confirmation hearings on Judge Merrick Garland, former President Obama’s Supreme Court nominee, Democrats have felt pressured to seek revenge and block the new Republican president’s nominee. The difference, of course, is that Garland was nominated to the court during an election year. In contrast, Trump’s nominee was selected after Republicans secured the confidence of the American people by winning the House, Senate, and White House.
And yet, given Democratic bitterness and frustration in the days following Trump’s unexpected presidential victory, the party of Obama and Clinton has been particularly hostile to any and all policy decisions put forward by the new administration.