WASHINGTON - As Democrats line up to oppose Neil Gorsuch's confirmation to the Supreme Court, Sen. Al Franken is vowing to vote against Gorsuch and Sen. Amy Klobuchar appears to be leaning against him.
In an interview on WCCO this weekend, Franken said he feared that the federal appeals court judge from Denver would join Chief Justice John Roberts in making 5-4 rulings that favored corporations.
The senator criticized Gorsuch for his dissenting ruling in a case involving a trucker for TransAm, Alphonse Maddin, who argued that he was wrongfully fired for disobeying a supervisor’s orders to stay with a faulty trailer for hours in subzero temperatures. Concerned for his safety, Maddin drove away and was later fired.
“He really did not put himself in the shoes of that driver,” Franken said of Gorsuch.
The trucker, he added, “did what anyone would have done” and could have frozen to death otherwise.
The U.S. Circuit of Appeals last year ordered the company to rehire Maddin in a 2-1 decision.
During last week’s confirmation hearings before the Senate Judiciary Committee, Gorsuch stressed that he had followed the law of the case. “I said it was an unkind decision, it might have been a wrong decision, a bad decision, but my job isn't to write the law.”
Klobuchar will announce her decision later this week on whether to vote for President Trump’s nominee to replace the late Antonin Scalia, but “she has serious concerns about Judge Gorsuch,” said a spokeswoman.
Democrats Klobuchar and Franken both sit on the Judiciary Committee, which is set to vote on Gorsuch’s nomination on April 3 before it goes to the full Senate.