Court Battles

Franken challenges witness endorsement of Gorsuch

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Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) grew frustrated Thursday by the testimony of retired 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Deanell Reece Tacha, who spoke in support of Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch on the fourth and final day of his confirmation hearing.

Tacha told the Senate Judiciary Committee that Gorsuch has an acute sense for identifying circumstances and reasons for when reaching consensus with his colleagues is the highest value and, “on the other hand, those decision points where personal conviction and reason dictate individual judgment and independent decision-making.”

But Franken pointed out that the committee had just spent three days hearing Gorsuch say over and over again, “My personal convictions don’t matter.”

{mosads}“Now someone who’s endorsing him say they do matter,” he said. “And this is what I worry about — that we were not allowed to hear any personal convictions, yet now I’m hearing that those matter a great deal.”

Tacha clarified her previous remarks, saying each judge brings his or her own reading, intellect and interpretation of the law to cases.


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