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tv   Sen Reair Sen. Hatch on Neil Gorsuch UK  CSPAN  March 18, 2017 7:43pm-8:01pm EDT

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her book "the home that was our country." they were optimists at that point. most people after 50 years of a brutal regime were pretty nervous of what was to come. >> 7:00 eastern, chelsea clinton on the book "governing global health." >> are the differences between wh traditional institutions, and the worldo -- who named the world bank, or the public-private partnerships. it is global health in how people across the world think of it. >> to book tv.org for the complete schedule. >> senate judiciary committee republicann hatch, a
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from you talking to the senate floor to talk about supreme court justice nominee neil gorsuch. his comments run about 15 minutes. mr. hatch: mr. president, i rise today to address once again the nomination of judge neil gorsuch to be the next associate justice of the united states supreme court. i am extraordinarily pleased that the president has nominated such an outstanding individual to fill the seat that was held by my friend, the late justice antonin scalia for nearly three decades. in the weeks since judge gorsuch's nomination, i've done my best to make the case that he is exactly the type of and kind of justice we need, onehat will in the words of marbury vs. madison, say what the law is, not what he wishes it to be. my view is his outstanding credentials and understanding of the proper role of a judge under our constitution make him a
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choice that should command universal support. unfortunately, this feeling does not appear to be as broadly shared as it should be. left-wing activists are demanding a scorched-earth approach to judge gorsuch's nomination, and i'm afraid that some of my colleagues on the other side of the aisle appear to have been swept up in this fervor. their opposition stems from two sources and taken two different forms. the first cause is the visceral reaction among some to our new president. after last year's bitterly fought election campaign, many on the left simply refuse to accept the legitimacy of the new administration and are dead set on all-out opposition to every initiative, every policy and every nominee of this president. as a case in point, we're in mid-march, and the president is still waiting for the senate to confirm his cabinet nominees.
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this hasn't happened, to my knowledge, in the 40 years i've been in the senate. skeptical of any nominee's willingness to hold the administration that nominated him accountable to the law, they are demanding assurances about how judge gorsuch would rule on the administration's most controversial moves. mr. president, the confirmation process should not be treated as just another forum to litigate the wisdom and lawfulness of the new administration's policies. not only does such an approach distract from the proper focus on the nominee's qualifications also threatens to undermine the very independence democrats claim to want in a supreme court justice. as i've explained in detail as recently as last week, nominees of both parties for decades have refused to speculate on cases that may come before them in
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order not to prejudice their potential future judgments. moreover, as a sitting federal judge, judge gorsuch is bound by the code of conduct for united states judges, one of the canons of which prohibits a judge from making, quote, public comment on the merits of a matter pending or impending in any court. unquote. in light of this long-standing, necessary and in judge gorsuch's case, legally mandated practice, i have found it extraordinarily disappointing to hear some of my colleagues try to turn on its head judge gorsuch's admirable efforts to protect his independence. for example, the minority leader has repeatedly castigated judge gorsuch for refusing to take a definitive stand on the legality of the new administration's policies accusing him of, quote, avoiding answers like the playing.
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unquote. mr. president, for those of us of all political stripes that want a supreme court justice that decides cases on the basis of what the law commands rather than whether the results serves a particular political or policy agenda, be it republican or democrat, conservative or liberal, pro-trump or anti-trump, judge gorsuch's refusal to prejudice his approach to future cases should be celebrated, not condemned. as justice soit -- sotomayor said recently any self-respecting judge who comes in with an agenda that would permit that judge to tell you how they will vote is the kind of person you don't want as a judge. unquote. put more colorfully, there is a playing threatening judicial independence here. this plague takes the form of the minority leader's attempt to
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extract these sort of inappropriate answers and judge gorsuch is wise to avoid that. mr. president, the minority leader should know better. moreover, we know the minority leader does know better given his many years of service on the judiciary committee and in particular how he acquiesced to the same approach when now-justices sotomayor and kagan were presented with similarly timely hypotheticals during their confirmation processes. sadly, i have little doubt that this line of attack on judge gorsuch will continue to infect the confirmation process. but we should be completely clear and unambiguous about what these attempts to get judge gorsuch to answer hypothetical questions about the legality of the administration's policies represent. they are illegitimate partisan
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attempts to derail his nomination, cleverlily shrouded in the cloak of alleged concern about his independence. americans should not be under any illusions that these proffered concerns about independence amount to anything else. to turn to the second source of opposition to judge gorsuch's nomination, one need only examine this week's "new york times" heading which blaredblar, quote, democrats' line of attack on gorsuch, no friend of the little guy. unquote. this has been repeated by various left-wing interest groups and by some of my colleagues here in the senate. they should be ashamed. as i have explained extensively in the past, the judge's critics view the judiciary as simply an extension of
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politics, just another forum to relitigate battle that they lost in the poilg -- policy making process. in their view, to pick winners and losers on the basis of the political popularity of the litigants and the policy consequences of a decision. while such an approach is antithetical to the rule of a judge under the constitution, it has become an entrenched article of faith for most of those on the left. as such, they have approached judge gorsuch's nomination in a predictable manner, cherry-picking and mischaracterizing his opinions as evidence of a political agenda with total disregard of what the law commanded in each of those cases. simply put, this line of attack on judge gorsuch is ludicrous. any reasonable analysis of his
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opinions shows that his decisions apply the laws enacted by the people's elected representatives without regard to his own personal preferences. his approach manifests the constitution's vision of the appropriate role of a judge that has been prominently embraced by justice scalia. quote, if you're going to be a good and faithful judge, you have to resign yourself to the fact that you're not always going to like the conclusions that you reach. if you like them all the time, you're probably doing something wrong. unquote. today i want to examine just a few of the cases seized object by judge gorsuch's liberal critics to demonstrate just how unfounded their attacks are. compass environmental versus occupational safety and health review commission, that case involved a tenth circuit ruling
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against a firm for failing to provide adequate training to protect its employees from electric shock hazards. judge gorsuch did indeed rule in the firm's favor, but the case did not present the question of whether the company should do more to protect its workers. rather, the case turned on the question of whether the secretary of labor satisfied the standard of showing any evidence to demonstrate that the firm in question was providing less training than was the norm in the industry. one need only examine the judge's opinion to understand how that specific legal burden was met reaching -- was met reaching the same conclusion as the administrative law judge. next, riddle versus hicken
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hickenlooper touches on one of the liberals' favorite talking points, the supposed need to regulate political speech in order to fight money in politics. while this case has been characterized as some invitation for wealthy and large corporations to exert undue influence in politics, it actually turned on a rather narrow and technical question of whether a $200 disparity in the contribution limits for major party and write-in state house of representatives -- write-in candidates for colorado state house of representatives amounted to an equal protection violation. judge gorsuch joined the majority opinion of his colleagues -- an obama appointee, by the way -- in agreeing that it did constitute such a violation, and then wrote a brief concurrence outlining how unclear supreme court precedent was on this
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particular point. moreover, he stated how, quote, clear, unquote, that, quote, with a little effort, colorado could have achieved its stated policy objectives without offending, unquote, the constitution. in essence, judge gorsuch adopted a particularly narrow position on a relatively minor issue in the grand scheme of campaign finance law. meriting none of his opponents' extrapolations about larger issues of political speech. finally, several of judge gorsuch's writings have called into question the so-called chevron doctrine under which federal courts defer to administrative agencies' interpretations of the law. his opponents have seized on this skepticism to argue that
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judge gorsuch has somehow reflexively opposed to regulation. well, nothing could be further from the truth. these critics of judge gorsuch will recall the chevron deference first flourished as a reaction against liberal judges overturning the deregulatory actions of the reagan administration. i myself am a skeptic of chevron and have led the fight to overturn it with my separation of powers restoration act. that is the name as my legislation suggests of returning chevron is about restoring the constitutional allocation of powers between the three branches, maintaining fidelity to the text of the administrative procedure act and ensuring that the bureaucracy abides by the law no matter its policy goals. mr. president, these are a few
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of judge gorsuch's opinions that have been most prom ineptly miss characterized as driven by a political agenda when in reality the results are demanded by the law. sadly, i expect these mischaracterizations and inappropriate demands of judge gorsuch will continue to appear in this confirmation process. they don't have any better arguments. those arguments are not only flawed, they're wrong and inappropriate. mr. president, let me quote from the prominent liberal law professor, harvard's noah feldman to sum up how i think we all should feel about this strategy. quote, i don't know who decided that the democratic critique of u.s. supreme court nominee judge neil gorsuch would be that he doesn't side with the little
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guy. it's a truly terrific idea, siding with workers against employers isn't a juris prudential position. it's a political stance. and justices, including progressive justices, should not decide cases based on who the parties are. they should decide cases based on their beliefs about how the law should be interpreted, unquote. that's a liberal law professor agreeing with me. and really condemning these type of ad hominem attacks by people who know better or should know better. mr. president, i urge my colleagues on the other side of the aisle to resist the temptation to give in to partisan and ideological pressure to engage in these tactics. i described these tactics
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earlier, and i hope people will pay attention to what i have suggested. these are unworthy of the senate's role, and they are unmerited with respect to such a stellar nominee as judge gorsuch. a man who is clearly committed to the proper independent role of a judge. i urge all of my colleagues to join me in helping to ensure his speedy confirmation. this man's a decent, honorable, intelligent man who deserves the support of this decent, honorable, intelligent body. but the arguments of the other side are without merit, and frankly are really abysmal, and i sure hope that they'll reconsider and vote for this man who will be an excellent
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>> next, ahead of the nomination for neil gorsuch, we will show you the and nomination remarks that each of the supreme court justices. after that, from january, president trump announcing his choice for supreme court. then a look at the career of neil gorsuch. >> the confirmation hearing for supreme court nominee judge neil gorsuch begins monday 11:00 a.m. eastern. you can see it live on c-span2. we look back to the opening statements of all 8 current supreme court justices at their confirmation hearings. the program includes remarks from senators introduced the nominees. this is under two hours. >>

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