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Al Franken Wastes Everyone’s Time By Asking About Judge Merrick Garland

Sen. Al Franken (D-MN) seems to have not been paying attention when Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT) asked Judge Neil Gorsuch about Judge Merrick Garland, because Franken found it necessary to ask the same question again, then complain about time getting wasted.

“How do you think Merrick Garland was treated by the Republican senators?” Franken asked Gorsuch.

Gorsuch responded by telling Franken, “Senator, since I became a judge ten years ago, I have a canon of ethics that precludes me from getting involved in any way, shape, or form in politics. There’s a reason why judges don’t clap at the State of the Union, and why I can’t even attend a political caucus in my home state to register a vote in the equivalent of a primary.”

Franken responded to Gorsuch answer by saying: “Okay. But I don’t think that this is – you have to state your political views. That’s not – this is about how a Supreme Court justice, who was nominated by the president of the United States, this is like in the Constitution. I think you’re allowed to talk about what happened to the last guy who was nominated in your position. You’re allowed to say something without being – about getting involved in politics. You can express an opinion on this.”

“Senator, I appreciate the invitation. But I know the other side has their views of this, and your side has your views of it. That, by definition, is politics,” Gorsuch told Franken. “And, Senator, judges have to stay outside of politics. I think the world of Merrick Garland. I think he’s an outstanding judge.”

At this point, Franken got upset with Gorsuch and told him, “I understand. Thank you. Thank you. I don’t mean to cut you off, but, you know, we have time.”

Maybe Franken should have took the advice of Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), who has told fellow Democrats that this isn’t a fruitful line of attack on Gorsuch.