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Democratic senator denies that Democrats plan to filibuster Gorsuch

Senate Foreign Relations Committee member Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, D-N.H. listens on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 18, 2017, during the committee's confirmation hearing for UN Ambassador-designate, South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley. (AP/Evan Vucci)

Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.) said on Tuesday that there was no disagreement that President Donald Trump's Supreme Court nominee Judge Neil Gorsuch should get an up-or-down vote instead of being subjected to a filibuster which would require a cloture vote.

"I haven’t heard any Democrats saying we don’t think that Judge Gorsuch should get a hearing or that he should get an up-or-down vote," Shaheen said on the Senate floor Tuesday afternoon. "Everybody I’ve talked to agrees he should a hearing and an up-or-down vote.

SEN. SHAHEEN: Mr. President, I just wanted to take a minute – I know we have several people waiting to speak – but I wanted to respond to my colleague from South Dakota because I think for Senator Thune to come to the floor and castigate Democrats for holding up Judge Gorsuch, who has just been nominated, and for suggesting we’re going to filibuster, the fact is, throughout most of last year we saw the Republican Majority in this body hold up the nominee of Merrick Garland, President Obama’s nominee. For the first time in history this body refused to hold a hearing on a nominee for the Supreme Court, refused to give an up-or-down vote. And, to suggest that we should not get a fair hearing on the nominee to the Supreme Court, Judge Gorsuch, I think is just not something that’s going to be good for the American people. Unlike the Republican Majority, I haven’t heard any Democrats saying we don’t think that Judge Gorsuch should get a hearing or that he should get an up-or-down vote. Everybody I’ve talked to agrees he should a hearing and an up-or-down vote.

An up-or-down vote would only require Gorsuch to receive a simple majority, not a 60-vote supermajority, to pass the nomination through. Republicans currently hold 52 seats in the Senate.

Shaheen's comments came shortly after her party's Minority Leader, Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY), made clear that he intended to lead a filibuster of Gorsuch's confirmation. Schumer penned a column for Politico explicitly stating that Trump's nominee should have to pass a cloture vote by achieving support from 60 or more senators. "Nominees to our nation’s highest court must demonstrate that they are mainstream and independent enough to earn the support of at least 60 senators from both parties," Schumer wrote on Tuesday. "Both of President Obama’s nominees to the Supreme Court exceeded that level of support." Schumer did not mention that former President Obama's third nominee did not enjoy enough support to receive a hearing or a vote.

"The simple question we are asking is: Can President Trump’s nominee meet that same test? If the nominee fails to meet 60 votes, the answer isn’t to change the rules; it’s to change the nominee." he added.

It is not clear whether Shaheen was unaware of Schumer's comments on his intention to filibuster Gorsuch's nomination or whether she was firmly disagreeing with Schumer's position. Shaheen's office did not immediately return a request for comment from TheBlaze seeking clarification.

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