Pence pushes Manchin in home state to support Gorsuch

Pence pushes Manchin in home state to support Gorsuch
© Greg Nash

Vice President Pence sought Saturday to pressure Sen. Joe ManchinJoseph (Joe) ManchinSenate Dems build huge cash edge in battlegrounds Morrisey accuses Manchin of 'lying' to Trump, attacks ‘liberal’ record The Hill's Morning Report — Trump, Putin meet under cloud of Mueller’s Russia indictments MORE to support President Trump's Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch, singling out the Democratic senator during a speech in his home state of West Virginia.

"Let me say this to you West Virginia, if we can get the help of Sen. Joe Manchin, and with the help of Sen. Shelley Moore CapitoShelley Wellons Moore CapitoSenate takes symbolic shot at Trump tariffs America must act to ensure qualified water workforce Overnight Health Care: Big win at Supreme Court for anti-abortion centers | HHS chief grilled on migrant children | Boom time for ObamaCare insurers? MORE [R], Judge Neil Gorsuch will soon become Justice Neil Gorsuch," Pence said during his speech at a construction supply depot.

The comments come as Republican lawmakers in the Senate and the White House push to confirm Gorsuch to fill the Supreme Court seat left vacant by Justice Antonin Scalia's death last year.

Some Senate Democrats, led by Minority Leader Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerThis week: GOP mulls vote on ‘abolish ICE’ legislation Red-state Dem tells Schumer to 'kiss my you know what' on Supreme Court vote Dem infighting erupts over Supreme Court pick MORE (D-N.Y.), are vowing to block the nomination, forcing Republicans to secure a filibuster-proof 60 votes to confirm Gorsuch to the high court.

Manchin, a moderate Democrat who is up for reelection in 2018, has said that he remains undecided on Gorsuch, indicating that he we will meet with the nominee before making up his mind.

The West Virginia senator's seat is considered a prime target for Republicans. Trump won West Virginia by 40 points in November, and Republicans hope to seize on his support in the state to expand their majority in the Senate.

The GOP currently holds 52 seats in the upper chamber, meaning they will likely have to win at least eight Democratic votes to confirm Gorsuch. Already, 13 Democrats have vowed to vote against him.

Among the factors driving Democratic opposition to Gorsuch is the Republicans' refusal to hold a hearing last year for former President Barack ObamaBarack Hussein ObamaTrump has the right foreign policy strategy — he just needs to stop talking The Hill's 12:30 Report — Trump faces bipartisan criticism over Putin presser, blames media for coverage Wall Street Journal editorial board rips Trump on Helsinki: It was a 'national embarrassment' MORE's Supreme Court nominee Merrick Garland.

Garland has since returned to his post as chief justice of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia.