WASHINGTON, D.C. ― U.S. Sen. Tom Udall has announced that he will vote against confirming Judge Neil Gorsuch to the U.S. Supreme Court. He issued the following statement:
“I have met with Judge Gorsuch, followed the hearings in the Senate Judiciary Committee, and studied his record, and I have decided that I can’t support his confirmation.
“The Supreme Court changes people’s lives, and its decisions stand for generations. It’s essential that justices understand not only how these issues impact our democracy, but how they affect people’s lives, and that they consider them free of ideology. Our meeting and the Senate hearings were Judge Gorsuch’s opportunity to convince me that he will be an independent mind on the Court. He not only failed to answer questions that are critical for me — his position on the rights of working mothers, whether women can choose their own health care decisions, LGBTQ rights, and dark money in our elections, to name a few — but he failed to convince me that he would be an independent voice on the Court.
“In just the last couple of months, the president has taken constitutionally questionable actions affecting Muslim immigrants and freedom of speech and religion. The FBI is investigating his campaign, and he faces scrutiny about whether his company is benefiting from his office. All of these issues could well come before the Supreme Court. It’s more important now than ever before that we have neutral clear-minded justices sitting on the bench.
“Every recent Supreme Court nominee has received at least 60 votes either for cloture or confirmation. Judge Gorsuch will be subject to the same test, and therefore, I will vote no on his confirmation, including cloture.
“Republican leadership obstructed President Obama’s nominee for this seat in an unprecedented fashion. Then President Trump won the election while losing the popular vote. In light of these factors, the president and Republican leadership should negotiate with Democrats on a fair path forward rather than rushing the confirmation process for Judge Gorsuch. I believe Judge Garland could have won 60 votes had he been allowed to make his case before the Senate. And I still hope that there’s a way to ensure he is seated.”