In a press conference today, Missouri leaders called on Sens. McCaskill and Blunt to reject Neil Gorsuch, President Donald Trump’s nominee to the Supreme Court. Neil Gorsuch poses a unique threat to women’s equality and has made clear that he’ll put the interests of the wealthy and powerful above the rights of ordinary Missourians. He would also endanger the civil rights and voting rights of Missourians.

Rabbi Randy Fleisher, Central Reform Congregation:

“We need an independent Supreme Court Justice who will protect American values. We rely on the Supreme Court to be the final check, to uphold our core values and the Constitution. That’s why there’s such a high standard for who should be confirmed to the Supreme Court. Throughout Gorsuch’s career, he’s repeatedly ignored the rights of everyday Americans. With a president who’s already so profoundly challenged American values with his discriminatory executive orders, we need a Justice who will protect the Constitution no matter what. But instead of nominating someone who will protect equal rights for all, Trump nominated Judge Gorsuch, who I fear will simply be a rubber stamp for Trump and his administration.”

Jen Bersdale, Executive Director, Missouri Health Care For All:

“As we’ve seen repeatedly throughout the course of our nation’s history, the Supreme Court has served the critical role of protecting the rights of all and upholding the Constitution even when extreme ideologues have tried to undermine American values. During Obama’s presidency in particular, we saw again and again the ability the Court has to protect Americans’ lives – like through upholding the Affordable Care Act. As we look to the future of health care law, protecting patients from the whims of for-profit health insurance companies will be critical. We are deeply concerned that a Supreme Court nominee who has repeatedly favored corporations over people will not protect patients the next time an insurer tries to deny coverage for the latest cancer treatments. Gorsuch would undoubtedly turn his back on the Constitution and the law to favor corporations over people. ”

M’Evie Mead, Planned Parenthood Advocates in Missouri:

“Let’s be clear: opposition to Roe v Wade is a disqualifier. The right to safe and legal abortion has been the law of the land for more than 40 years, and is a part of the fabric of this country. Nominees to the highest court in the land must make clear that they will protect our fundamental rights — including the right of to control one’s own body.We rely on the Supreme Court to protect reproductive rights and access to healthcare, but Gorsuch would be devastating for women in Missouri and across the country. He was one of the judges on the original Hobby Lobby which allowed corporations to deny their employees access to birth control as part of their healthcare. We can’t have a justice on the Court who jeopardizes women’s health. Sens. McCaskill and Blunt should stand up for Missourians and oppose Judge Gorsuch.”

John Hickey, Chapter Director at Sierra Club – Missouri Chapter:

“While the Supreme Court is tasked with fairly interpreting the law and protecting the Constitution, Judge Gorsuch would do just the opposite. It’s likely that if Gorsuch were to be confirmed, the Supreme Court would strike down key environmental protections that keep our air and water clean. A Trump Supreme Court would help big polluters at the expense of our health and wellness–we must block Judge Gorsuch.”

Faizan Syed, Council on American-Islam Relations, CAIR – St. Louis:

“We depend on the Court to uphold constitutional values, and for that to happen we need independent justices who won’t just rubber stamp everything that Donald Trump does. After the actions of this past week that defied the American principle of religious liberty, it’s more important than ever that we have an independent Court. But we’ve seen Judge Gorsuch repeatedly put his own extreme ideology over the Constitution, and that’s why Senators must oppose Gorsuch’s nomination to our nation’s highest Court.”

Alison Dreith, NARAL Pro-Choice Missouri:

“During his presidential campaign, Donald Trump promised to appoint Supreme Court justices who’d overturn Roe v. Wade, and he’s trying to do just that by appointing Judge Gorsuch to the Supreme Court. We can’t go back to a time of illegal, back alley abortions; but that’s what we could see happen with a Trump Supreme Court. We need a Supreme Court who will respect the rights of women and all Americans, and that’s why we can’t let Judge Gorsuch be confirmed to the Court.”

Denise Lieberman, Co-Program Director, Power & Democracy & Senior Attorney at Advancement Project:

“Trump’s Supreme Court has the opportunity to shape interpretation of our civil rights and constitutional law for generations to come. History demonstrates the harms of a court that fails to recognize equality under law for all of our nation’s citizens. With this administration positioned to harm Muslims, Black people, communities of color, the LGBTQ community, women and immigrants, the stakes are as high as they have been in generations. I do not think that we can trust Judge Gorsuch to protect all Americans. Trump made clear that his intent was to nominate a justice in the mold of the late Antonin Scalia, a justice who called the Voting Rights Act a ‘racial entitlement.’ Judge Gorsuch’s narrow interpretation of constitutional rights could prove devastating for our most marginalized communities. Civil rights, voting rights, and worker rights hang in the balance. At a time when the President of the United States seems intent on limiting our access to the ballot, the wrong appointment risks moving us closer to when the courts allowed Jim Crow to rule the land. No less is at stake with this nomination, and the U.S. Senate should not allow a path forward for Judge Gorsuch, whose nomination threatens to turn back the clock on hard-fought gains for equality.”

Marie-Aimee Abizera, Executive Director, Missouri Immigrant and Refugee Advocates (MIRA):

“More than ever, we need a Justice who will stand up for the Constitution and American values. Trump’s executive actions this past weekend violated American principles, and without the Court as a real check on the executive branch, we could see fundamental rights being taken away. Religious discrimination can never be tolerated, but I have little faith that Judge Gorsuch will stand up to Trump. Instead, he’ll blindly side with Trump and turn his back on our communities.”

Susan Witte, President, National Council of Jewish Women-St. Louis Section:

“NCJW believes that only those women and men committed to upholding constitutional rights and fundamental freedoms should be confirmed to lifetime seats on the Federal Bench. Despite his academic credentials, Judge Gorsuch, through his court opinions and essays, has made clear that he has no respect for the constitutional principles that have supported the progress made by women and minorities throughout our country’s history.”


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