WASHINGTON (CBS SF/AP) — A divided Senate panel narrowly backed Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch Monday afternoon.
The Judiciary Committee voted 11-9 along party lines on Monday to favorably recommend Gorsuch to the full Senate. A confirmation vote is expected on Friday, but not before a partisan showdown over President Donald Trump’s choice.
Democrats have secured the 41 votes to block Gorsuch with a filibuster after Delaware Sen. Chris Coons said he would vote against the nominee. The opposition will prevent Republicans from reaching the 60 votes they need to move Gorsuch over procedural hurdles to a final Senate vote.
Senator Dianne Feinstein said she will vote against the nomination of Judge Gorsuch.
The California Democrat cited two cases in which, she says, Gorsuch inserted his own view of what the law should be. In one case Gorsuch sided with a trucking company over a fired trucker who refused to drive a disabled truck in subzero weather. In the other case, Gorsuch sided with a school district that denied services to a student with autism.
Feinstein also says she is troubled that Gorsuch refused to say whether he supports the outcome of Brown v. Board of Education, the court decision that ended racial segregation in public schools.
Feinstein is the top Democrat on the Senate Judiciary Committee.
Determined to confirm him despite Democratic objections, Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has signaled he will likely change Senate rules later this week to reduce the threshold from 60 to a simple majority to get Gorsuch confirmed.
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