Front Page Talking Points


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SL.CCS.1/2/3/4 Grades 6-12: An essay of a current news event is provided for discussion to encourage participation, but also inspire the use of evidence to support logical claims using the main ideas of the article. Students must analyze background information provided about a current event within the news, draw out the main ideas and key details, and review different opinions on the issue. Then, students should present their own claims using facts and analysis for support.

Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch awaits Senate review and confirmation vote


1.gifPick a catchy or forceful quote from an editorial or opinion column about the nomination.

2.gifWhat's happening as Judge Gorsuch and senators prepare for his confirmation hearing? Summarize a news update.

3.gifDescribe any other action by the president this week.

In a decision with far-reaching impact, President Trump last week picked Neil Gorsuch, a federal appeals judge from Denver, for an open seat on the nine-member U.S. Supreme Court. The nominee has politically conservative views similar to those of the late Justice Antonin Scalia, whose death last February created the vacancy. If approved by the Senate, Gorsuch would restore a 5-4 split between conservatives and liberals on the court. "I only hope that both Democrats and Republicans can come together for once, for the good of the country," Trump said at his nationally televised White House announcement.

Conservative and business groups applaud the choice. But Democrats, angered by Republican refusals for nearly a year to consider President Barack Obama's choice to succeed Justice Scalia, threaten a confirmation showdown. "This is a stolen seat. This is the first time a Senate majority has stolen a seat," says Sen. Jeff Merkley, D-Ore. "We will use every lever in our power to stop this." The process starts soon with a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing before a vote by all 100 senators.

The 49-year-old judge, whose last name is pronounced GORE-sutch, is the youngest Supreme Court choice in 25 years. If confirmed for the lifetime job , he'd potentially shape major decisions for decades. Coincidentally, Gorsuch graduated from Harvard Law School the same year as Obama. Since Scalia's death, the nation's highest court has been evenly divided between Democratic appointees and Republican ones. This has resulted in occasional deadlocks and many narrow decisions.

President says: "Judge Gorsuch has outstanding legal skills, a brilliant mind, tremendous discipline and has earned bipartisan support."

Nominee says: "I will do all my powers permit to be a faithful servant of the Constitution and laws of this great country."

Democratic leader says: "Now, more than ever, we need a Supreme Court justice who . . . will preserve our democracy, protect fundamental rights and will stand up to a president who has already shown a willingness to bend the Constitution." – Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y.

Front Page Talking Points is written by Alan Stamm for NIEonline.com, Copyright 2017
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