Maryland Senators Cardin, Van Hollen Opposed to Gorsuch - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Maryland Senators Cardin, Van Hollen Opposed to Gorsuch

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Supreme Court Justice nominee Neil Gorsuch testifies on the second day of his Senate Judiciary Committee confirmation on March 21, 2017. (AP Images / Tom Williams) Supreme Court Justice nominee Neil Gorsuch testifies on the second day of his Senate Judiciary Committee confirmation on March 21, 2017. (AP Images / Tom Williams)

WASHINGTON- Maryland's two Democratic senators Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen announced Tuesday they will oppose President Donald Trump's nominee to serve on the Supreme Court.

Both senators issued separate statements about why they will vote against Gorsuch's nomination to fill the seat on the high court that has been left vacant for 13 months since the death of Justice Antonin Scalia. 

Cardin, who is the the ranking member of the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations and member of the Environment & Public Works, Small Business and Finance committees, explained that he is "deeply troubled" by Gorsuch's record. He also said Gorsuch falls outside of the judicial mainstream compared to Merrick Garland, who was former President Barack Obama's Supreme Court nominee. 

"His extensive legal record is peppered with examples of putting corporate interests before working Americans, showing hostility to agency decisions that protect our environment, disregard for women’s health, marginalizing students with disabilities and many more troubling decisions," Cardin said. "While he said little of substance at his confirmation hearing, Judge Gorsuch’s record shows clearly why he was a choice candidate of the Heritage Foundation and the Federalist Society. Despite his protestations, his record points to a jurist who has not separated his political views from his legal views. I do not believe that he would serve as an independent check on this president, who has tested the limits of the Constitution and the separation of powers in a way that no other modern president has done."

In explaining why he would oppose Gorsuch, Van Hollen said that after reviewing the judge's record and his testimony before the Judiciary Committee, the he concluded that that Gorsuch "applies a cramped reading of the law and consistently sides with powerful special interests against the rights of individuals, workers, and consumers."

"When he had an opportunity during the hearings to clarify that bias, he chose instead to evade questions and answered with platitudes, not substance," Van Hollen said.

Like Cardin, Van Hollen said Gorsuch falls outside the judicial mainstream, and gave an example.

"The case that the Supreme Court decided in the middle of his hearing illustrates the point: the current Supreme Court Justices unanimously rejected his reasoning against the right of individuals with disabilities to receive an equal education. For all these reasons, I will oppose his nomination," Van Hollen said. 

Van Hollen's statement went further than Cardin's when he said he would "insist" that Gorsuch be held to a 60-vote standard in order to be seated on the court.

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