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Democrats Facing Re-Election Skip Trump’s Supreme Court Announcement

Sens. Joe Donnelly (D-IN), Joe Manchin (D-WV), and Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND).
Paul Morigi/Getty, ANDREW CABALLERO-REYNOLDS/AFP/Getty, Alex Wong/Getty

The three Democrats who voted to confirm Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch have declined to attend the White House ceremony where President Donald Trump will announce his choice to replace retiring Justice Anthony Kennedy.

The Associated Press reported:

Three Democratic senators sure to face tremendous pressure over whether to back President Donald Trump’s Supreme Court nominee have been invited to Monday’s White House announcement of the pick. But Indiana’s Joe Donnelly, North Dakota’s Heidi Heitkamp and West Virginia’s Joe Manchin all say they won’t attend.

All face tough re-election races this November in states Trump won easily in 2016.

All three states lean heavily Republican. But nearly all Senate Democrats and many Democratic voters are expected to oppose Trump’s nominee. They say the person would likely take strongly conservative views on issues like abortion and healthcare.

Another Democrat — Sen. Bob Casey (D-PA) — said he would oppose Trump’s justice pick no matter who the president picks, according to AP. 

Bob Salera, a campaign spokesman for Senate Republicans, said in the AP report that Casey has “given up any pretense of being a moderate voice” by opposing any person Trump chooses.

The top three contenders are said to be judges Brett Kavanaugh, Amy Coney Barrett, and Thomas Hardiman.

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