Politics & Government

SC reactions to Trump’s Supreme Court nomination

Supporters and opponents of President Trump’s Supreme Court pick responded quickly to the nomination of Judge Neil Gorsuch for the seat opened by the death of Associate Justice Antonin Scalia.

U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham

In a statement, South Carolina’s senior Sen. Lindsey Graham called it a “home run pick” by Trump.

“This is a home run pick by President Trump.

“Judge Gorsuch is a well-qualified jurist with an impeccable resume. As a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, I look forward to hearings on the nominee and expect he will be given an up-or-down vote on the Senate floor. I look forward to his eventual confirmation to the Supreme Court.

“Finally, President Obama was elected by the American people and nominated Justices Sotomayor and Kagan to the Supreme Court. I voted for them – not because I agreed with them – but because both were qualified to serve on the Court. I urge my colleagues to extend Judge Gorsuch the same courtesy when considering his nomination. I ask no more of them than I asked of myself.”

U.S. Sen. Tim Scott

The Palmetto State’s other U.S. sennator, Tim Scott, said Gorsuch has “the reputation of a consistent conservative.”

“I am happy to see that President Trump has nominated Judge Neil Gorsuch to serve as Supreme Court Justice. With over a decade of experience on the Tenth Circuit, Gorsuch has the reputation of a consistent conservative and someone who will uphold the Constitution and defend our country's founding principles. His record shows that he fully supports religious liberty and protects freedom of speech. I believe that Judge Gorsuch will serve as a great successor to the late Justice Scalia, and I look forward to supporting his nomination over the coming months.”

U.S. Rep. Joe Wilson

U.S. Rep. Joe Wilson, R-Springdale, continued the positive reaction among Republican members of Congress.

“Judge Neil Gorsuch is an excellent choice to be the next Associate Justice of the United States Supreme Court, and a fitting choice to replace Justice Antonin Scalia. Throughout his career, Judge Gorsuch has demonstrated he is commitment to interpreting law, not using the Court to make laws.

“I applaud President Donald Trump’s selection. Judge Gorsuch’s extensive credentials and impeccable qualifications should earn bipartisan support. I urge the Senate to confirm his nomination swiftly.”

U.S. Rep. Jeff Duncan

U.S. Rep. Jeff Duncan, R-Laurens, said Gorsuch’s record “gives me great hope that he will be a forceful conservative voice.”

“Once again, President Trump has gotten it right. Choosing a nominee of the stature of Judge Gorsuch shows a continued commitment to originalist and textualist principles that served our country well with Justice Scalia, and will continue to serve us well in the future.

“I am particularly heartened that President Trump has nominated a justice who will play a key role as the Court decides issues related to Life, religious liberty, and the proper role of government. Judge Gorsuch’s rulings and comments on these matters gives me great hope that he will be a forceful conservative voice on the Court for decades to come.

“I look forward to a speedy confirmation in the Senate, and I call on our Senators to get Judge Gorsuch on the bench as quickly as possible to get the Court back on track.”

U.S. Rep. Mark Sanford

U.S. Rep. Mark Sanford, R-Charleston, thinks Gorsuch would continue “the great project of Justice Scalia’s career.”

"I applaud President Trump's decision to nominate Neil Gorsuch for the Supreme Court. Judge Gorsuch is a distinguished jurist and has proven his resolve in strictly interpreting the Constitution and in standing for liberty."

"Judge Gorsuch is not only well accredited, but I hope that his having been confirmed previously by a unanimous voice vote in the Senate bodes well for his confirmation to the Supreme Court. Conservatives should be encouraged that Judge Gorsuch understands the balance of power intended by our Founding Fathers as he has indicated regarding his assessment of his soon-to-be predecessor's legacy, saying, 'The great project of Justice Scalia’s career was to remind us of the differences between judges and legislators.’”

S.C. Democratic chairman Jamie Harrison

S.C. Democrats, including state Democratic Party chairman Jaime Harrison, still are upset at the way Republican senators treated President Obama’s nominee for the same seat.

"The judge nominated by President Obama for this Supreme Court seat, Merrick Garland, was called 'a consensus nominee' by Senator Orrin Hatch. But Senate Republicans refused to even give him a hearing; Mitch McConnell said, 'Let's let the American people decide.' Well, by a margin of almost 3 million, more Americans chose Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump to fill this seat. So President Trump would have been wise to choose a consensus nominee like Merrick Garland. But given Trump's radical actions since the start of his presidency, we should not be surprised that he has chosen a judge whose record favoring big corporations and opposing civil rights suggests that he is a right-wing zealot. Unless the hearings somehow reveal that Judge Gorsuch's extreme record will not continue on our nation's highest court, bring out the cots for a filibuster."

S.C. GOP chairman Matt Moore

S.C. Republican Party chairman Matt Moore said Trump had fulfilled “one of his biggest campaign promises.”

“Tonight, President Trump fulfilled one of his biggest campaign promises to the American people by selecting Neil Gorsuch, a mainstream conservative to serve on the United States Supreme Court. I am confident Neil Gorsuch will faithfully uphold the Constitution, protect our individual rights, and preserve the idea of limited government."

Palmetto Family Council

Oran P. Smith, president of the conservative Palmetto Family Council, called Gorsuch’s nomination an “opportunity to make positive progress in the critical areas affecting America’s and South Carolina’s families.

“With the addition of a conservative justice, the high court will now have new leadership and energy to pursue correct rulings on abortion, locker room privacy, and many other relevant issues South Carolina families. I sincerely hope and pray that Neil Gorsuch will follow in the footsteps of his predecessor, the late Justice Antonin Scalia.”