Donald Trump is furious over how his Supreme Court pick Neil Gorsuch is speaking critically about him, and he is taking it out on everyone else. Trump’s frustration stems from Gorsuch’s summation of Trump’s words about a judge to be “demoralizing” and “disheartening.”
The situation that led to an early Thursday morning gripe is a bit complicated. On Wednesday, Gorsuch reportedly told some senators that he was displeased with how the president was lambasting judges for not bending to his will concerning his immigration ban. Specifically, Trump was upset with James Robart, who blocked his order. Senator Richard Blumenthal told Roll Call how Gorsuch expressed disappointment with Trump’s comments:
“He certainly expressed to me that he is disheartened by the demoralizing and abhorrent comments made by President Trump about the judiciary, but I will be asking for more specific and forthcoming responses to those kinds of questions before I determine how I will vote,” Blumenthal said.
Blumenthal said in a statement that he asked Gorsuch to make his statement about Trump’s comments publicly, but Gorsuch declined.”
Senator Ben Sasse said he had a similar conversation with Gorsuch: “This is a guy who kind of welled up with some energy and he said any attack on any, I think his term to me was brothers or sisters of the robe, is an attack on all judges, and he believes in an independent judiciary.”
Well, Trump didn’t take too kindly to Blumenthal’s assertions and called out his credentials:
Meanwhile, Gorsuch has had some people speak on his behalf over a 24-hour period, so he gave a statement too. As reported by BuzzFeed, Gorsuch claims he was only speaking in general terms:
Judge Gorsuch has made it very clear in all of his discussions with senators, including Senator Blumenthal, that he could not comment on any specific cases and that judicial ethics prevent him from commenting on political matters. He has also emphasized the importance of an independent judiciary, and while he made clear that he was not referring to any specific case, he said that he finds any criticism of a judge’s integrity and independence disheartening and demoralizing.
Gorsuch isn’t divulging what he said to the senators and seems to be remaining on Trump’s side. It’s a good way to avoid a Twitter onslaught from his possible future boss.