Centrist Democrat calls for up-or-down vote for Gorsuch

Centrist Democrat calls for up-or-down vote for Gorsuch

Sen. Heidi HeitkampMary (Heidi) Kathryn Heitkamp11 former Democratic senators call for 'meaningful reform to Senate rules' Harry Reid, political pugilist and longtime Senate majority leader, dies Virginia loss lays bare Democrats' struggle with rural voters MORE (N.D.), a centrist Democrat up for reelection in a state that strongly supported President Trump, said Tuesday that Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch should get an up-or-down vote.

“As I said last year when Judge Garland was nominated — and reiterated again when Judge Gorsuch was nominated — the U.S. Senate should have an up or down vote on any Supreme Court nominee as part of fulfilling our constitutional duty of providing advice and consent on nominees to the Supreme Court,” Heitkamp said in a statement.

She said Republicans shouldn’t have played politics with the high court by refusing to give Merrick Garland, President Obama’s nominee to the court, a hearing or a floor vote last year.

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But she argued that Democrats should not do the same with Trump’s pick.

“It’s my duty to fully consider any Supreme Court nominee, regardless of which party is in the White House — such a role should be above politics,” Heitkamp said in her statement.

Heitkamp said she is “in the process of reviewing the materials he submitted and testimony from his hearing” and is still considering the nominee’s record.

Sen. Joe ManchinJoe ManchinBriahna Joy Gray: Last-minute push for voting legislation felt 'perfomative' Manchin: Biden spending plan talks would start 'from scratch' Manchin, Collins leading talks on overhauling election law, protecting election officials MORE (W.Va.), another centrist Democrat, took a similar approach Monday when he told NBC that he would vote to end a filibuster of Gorsuch but had not made a final decision on whether to support him on a final confirmation vote, which only requires a simple majority.

Republicans control 52 seats and need eight Democrats or Independents to vote with them to end a filibuster liberals plan to wage against Gorsuch.

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The Hill's Whip List: Where Dems stand on Trump's Supreme Court nominee