Before Senator Nelson’s meeting w/ Judge Gorsuch today, it’s important to take a look back at his filibuster flip-flop. In 2006, Nelson opposed the use of a filibuster for the nomination of Justice Alito, but now has adopted a different stance. See below for more…
FLIP: In 2006, Senators Nelson joined a small handful of Democrat Senators who opposed an unprecedented effort by fellow Democrats like Clinton, Obama, Kennedy, etc. to filibuster Justice Alito’s nomination. Nelson voted for cloture (against the filibuster), then voted against Alito’s nomination (no on the up-or-down vote), standing by the principle of not filibustering SCOTUS nominees. (Link to vote)
FLOP: Following the nomination of Judge Gorsuch, Senator Nelson changed his tune on the filibuster, maybe under pressure from Schumer, and is now calling for 60 votes for Judge Gorsuch’s confirmation. This from the Tampa Bay Times:
“… Nelson opposed a filibuster of Samuel Alito’s Supreme Court nomination in 2006, calling for an up-or-down vote (he was ultimately against Alito) but today stands with Democrats in insisting on a 60-vote threshold. “You bet I do. The filibuster has always forced the political extremes to come of the middle to build consensus,” Nelson said…”
FACT CHECK: The Washington Post gave “Two Pinocchios” to Senator Nelson’s Democrat colleagues who called this ’60-vote threshold’ the standard for Supreme Court nominees, saying that the Senate Democrats are “being slippery with their language.”
PolitiFact gave Senator Baldwin the rare “Full Flop” for making the same claims Senator Nelson is making now: previously supporting a speedy confirmation process for SCOTUS nominees but now trying to obstruct the nomination of Judge Gorsuch.
While at least nine other Democrats have called for an up-or-down vote of Judge Gorsuch, Senator Nelson appears to be succumbing to pressure from his party’s leadership and left-wing activists.