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Neil Gorsuch Confirmed to Supreme Court

Jessica Mason Pieklo

Gorsuch's confirmation vote required only a simple majority, not the 60-vote threshold Democrats had used to filibuster President Trump's nomination.

The U.S. Senate on Friday voted 54 to 45 to confirm Judge Neil Gorsuch to the U.S. Supreme Court, filling the seat left vacant for more than a year after the death of Justice Antonin Scalia.

Gorsuch’s confirmation returns the Court to a bench with nine justices and a 5-4 conservative majority. Gorsuch gets his spot on the Roberts Court after Senate Republicans in 2016 refused to hold hearings on President Obama’s pick to replace Scalia, Merrick Garland.

Republicans hold a 52-48 Senate majority. Thanks to a rule change by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) that altered the way Supreme Court justices are confirmed, Gorsuch’s confirmation vote required only a simple majority, not the 60-vote threshold Democrats had used to filibuster President Trump’s nomination.

Gorsuch, 49, will likely be on the Court for decades.

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