President Donald Trump’s nomination of Judge Neil Gorsuch to the United States Supreme Court to fill the vacancy left when Antonin Scalia died last year drew immediate support from congressional Republicans representing Georgia and opposition from local Democrats.
“President Trump promised the American people he would nominate someone to the Supreme Court who is unwavering in their support of the Constitution, and he has kept his word,” U.S. Sen. David Perdue, R-Ga., said in a statement.
“Throughout his career Judge Gorsuch has stood steadfast in his support of our Constitution and the Founding Principles it enshrines: economic opportunity, fiscal responsibility, limited government, and individual liberty. These principles are what make the United States exceptional, and each branch of government shares the responsibility for protecting these rights.”
Scalia’s seat has remained unfilled since last February after Republicans blocked former President Barack Obama’s nominee, Judge Merrick Garland.
“As I argued following the untimely death of Justice Scalia last year, the American people deserved to have a voice in the process of selecting our next Supreme Court justice by allowing the next president to select Justice Scalia’s replacement,” U.S. Sen. Johnny Isakson, R-Ga., said in a statement. “That day has arrived and the American people have spoken. President Trump’s nominee deserves fair and thorough consideration and an up-or-down vote by the Senate, and I look forward to Judge Gorsuch’s confirmation process.”
The Senate previously confirmed Gorsuch in 2006 for a seat on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit, based in Denver.
“President Trump selected the closest candidate possible to reflect the views of the much loved and respected Justice Scalia,” said Debra Pilgrim, chairwoman of the Hall County GOP. “One could also conclude it to be a smart move selecting a judge from a state he did not carry in the election.”
U.S. Rep. Doug Collins, R-Gainesville, a member of the House Judiciary Committee, also applauded the selection of Gorsuch.
“I could not be more pleased to see a Supreme Court nominee who values life and who labors to uphold, rather than revise, the Constitution,” he said in a statement. “Judge Gorsuch’s protection of religious freedom and expression has been steadfast, and I look forward to his confirmation as a Justice of the Supreme Court.”
For Democrats in Georgia, Gorsuch is a non-starter for the high court.
“The Young Democrats of Hall County vehemently oppose the nomination of Judge Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court,” Gabriel Shippy said in a statement. “His judicial record mirrors that of the late Justice Scalia who on almost every occasion ruled in favor of corporations and against the interests of organized labor, women’s rights and racial equality.”
Democratic Party of Georgia Chairman DuBose Porter said working working Americans should be “frightened” by Gorsuch’s nomination and criticized Republicans for blocking Obama’s nominee last year.
“(Gorsuch) has a well-documented history of favoring CEOs and corporations over the very people who drive our country’s economy,” Porter said in a statement. “The GOP’s naked obstructionism prevented our country from having a fully-functioning Supreme Court. Georgians are watching Senators Isakson and Perdue to see just how swiftly they roll over in submission to push Donald Trump’s pick through the confirmation process, proving they could have done their job during the Obama administration and just flat out chose not to.”