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Rep. Gallego: Senate Democrats Must Filibuster Trump’s Supreme Court Nominee

January 31, 2017
Press Release

Congressman Ruben Gallego issued the following statement:

“Many of my Democratic colleagues in the Senate are anxiously waiting to see who Donald Trump will pick to fill the vacancy on the Supreme Court.  They want to probe the selection’s record and scrutinize his or her decisions before rendering judgment.  While that certainly would have been a defensible approach in the past, it’s absolutely the wrong one today.  Senate Democrats should announce immediately that they intend to filibuster Donald Trump’s Supreme Court nominee. 

It’s not just that Trump will undoubtedly select an ideologue to serve on our nation’s highest court.  It’s not just that his pick will unquestionably prioritize corporate profits over the welfare of working families or seek to curtail the ability of women to make choices about their own bodies.  No, beyond these weighty considerations about how Trump’s pick will rule from the bench lies a basic truth ignored by media: Republicans have broken all kind of norms in their pursuit of power and we must check them.

By blockading an accomplished, centrist jurist in Merrick Garland, Senate Republicans disregarded the norms that sustain American democracy.  But instead of invoking the so-called ‘nuclear option’ or making a recess appointment to the court, Democrats dithered while Republican won a major victory.  Our party’s response was weak and ineffectual then – it must be strong and unwavering today. 

At a time when our American values are coming under sustained assault, Democrats must draw a line in the sand on the Senate floor.  Mitch McConnell routinely relied on the power of the filibuster to block President Obama’s pursuit of progress.  Now, Democrats must employ the same tactics to thwart Donald Trump’s authoritarian tendencies and extreme agenda.

With control of the Supreme Court at stake and in the face of unprecedented attacks on our nation’s democratic norms, Democrats must rise to the challenge.  Senate Democrats must not delay in declaring their intention to filibuster Donald Trump’s nominee.”