Recapping day one of confirmation hearings for Neil Gorsuch

ABC News' Amna Nawaz and Terry Moran break down day one of confirmation hearings for SCOTUS nominee Neil Gorsuch.
13:09 | 03/20/17

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Transcript for Recapping day one of confirmation hearings for Neil Gorsuch
Hey guys I'm on an Abbas live in New York you're having trouble keeping up all the headlines coming out of Washington DC today. We don't blame you but don't worry we are here what are the biggest headlines coming from the capital today of course. President trounced nominee to act take the vacant Supreme Court seat Neal Boortz that. Had its first day of confirmation hearings. We just opening statements that the first chance they were getting to actually hear from the nominee himself and hear how people might be questioning in the days moving forward. Let's bring in now Terry Murray and who knows more about how this process work than anybody else is watching all the action. Down there in Washington DC carry what was your big take away from watching the first time judge course it. Delivered those kind of remark. Yeah out of that is exactly this is the first time and in many ways these next couple days the only time Americans will get on good long look. At judge courses shoes at then at that table I went and had sent these long it was reported work. Just to get a feel for the remote here skybox effect but just like -- Keller you know field. And I do that you could hear him. When judge course it's game. A very personal very affecting. Very smooth opening statement this is the easy part of course he broke they've written for these fine writers or closed themselves. He's got a very practiced. Nice demeanor and so he was gonna do well but he didn't really. There were moments spontaneity turned as one naturally well it. Thank his wife and teller he loves her and very quite naturally couldn't. It was so awkward yet. Let's hug and melting kind of sweet little moment I'd say I looked around the room this there's that report the law you know. That's pretty good start for a Supreme Court nominee doesn't show like what you get. The question I was having my my look these are big fears for Russia's partisan battles as they should be. High stakes the issues are important and profound. But at one of the questions that that I personally have them and a lot of people is when you look at it nominee the Supreme Court. If you were to walk into his or her courtroom. Do you feel you would get a fair shot. That's kind almost the gut level question before the partisan issues profound issues. That a lot of people trapped one of the reasons Robert Bork was rejected. People looked at at all I don't think I'm gonna get a fair shot from that guy. And that's scale I think judge corset on day one here a long way to go he did very well. It is that he mentioned just day one and you were following his remarks parents from the opening statement that the numbers forgiving as well did he get hint. About what kinds of lines of questioning he's going to face thick that you mentioned. They think a really big deal it could fall very sharply along partisan lines. Right absolutely we just talk at the chairman of the committee. Senator Grassley from Iowa and he said he might not even get a single democratic vote on this committee but he's confident of course it will get democratic votes on the floor. But you didn't hear how many exactly at what our senators interest at an a couple of things first president trump. They don't like it agenda the Democrats they're concerned and they want to make sure that judge corsets doesn't support things like attacking courts and attacking judges. They raised the immigration. Policy Muslim band that that. President trump has put in place they were. You're just course it reject. Another line of attack did you can expect because we heard today. It is the notion that it is opinions judge court such too often signs. With the rich and powerful corporations and not with the working man and woman and one case came up again and again. Gates a truck driver. Whose brakes and whose trailer being big tractor trailer that he had went out. In sub zero freezing weather outside Chicago the company told to stay with the trailer he started getting so cold he was afraid for himself on coupled. He went to plays to get warm and the company fire and courts sided with the company. Even though the man was ratings frosted so that kind of thing you can expect on the Republican side they're gonna bring out. Just how often judge course it has been praised by Democrats he was confirmed unanimously. Ten years ago to the court he was introduced here today by president Obama's solicitor general of the top officials. In the Justice Department Eagle County. Who said that this is judge should be confirmed Supreme Court got a lot of head of steam behind him. But I think it would get very contentious and there tomorrow for shore. Terry you know expecting it is talking about some of his influences some of his judicial. Heroes if you will any actually mentioned Justice Scalia. As an mentor so that helped or hurt as folks are considering his nomination. Well it depends on which side of the Fed's you're all right if you like Scalia that helps you know that that hurts you. He's he's separated Scalia a little bit such thing. So he clerked for a justice named Byron white who was nicknamed Byron whizzer white. A nickname he hated. Because Byron white was great college football player in the 1930s and in fact. First it was eighty Rhodes scholar at the university of Colorado's is cholera. Where the road that became the highest paid player in the NFL in the nineteen yards which wasn't that much drugs at the great great athlete and president John Kennedy put him on the Supreme Court. Judge Neil corset clerk for him. Almost 25 years ago now and really looked up to him white was a guy who was appointed by Democrat. Was strong on civil rights very much part of that civil rights revolution of the Warren court. But also very strong for police and prosecutors on criminal law and pro business and so you couldn't predict where he was going to end up. Judge course its ads kind of judge like. He also page of the Justice Kennedy for whom he also clerk because justice white retired and I just kept inherited them praised justice Kennedy's. Inclusiveness and and his sense that every single person comes of the courtroom is a real person these cases are numbers or names are real life. That's what he got Justice Kennedy and then with Justice Scalia. He said we got Justice Scalia this originally his idea this notion that. That you stick to the original interpreted original meaning of the constitution. Original tax textual. Integrity of laws and the constitution. So slightly less warm if you're looking for a line. He clearly adored justice white and Justice Kennedy and admires justices Scully did say however what official and he said he fished. With the enthusiasm and a new Yorker. If you slap the line Harden up on the water some other fish would like it's it was warm there. He sure isn't great stories he did you mentioned earlier how he came across really personable really. Genuine and authentic he talked about his family and its humble beginnings he shared a story I think also about like tripping on his robe right on the first day as a judge. Some how important it all of it how important is it for him to be. Light and to come across as likable to whoever gets intended audiences. What that's a good quick the first first audiences this he needs he needs to connect with senators and then the American public will if they don't. Like an out if they do economic. It'll be that kind of public sentiment even public pressure that will ultimately determine the vote. Just chairman Greg Presley Chuck Grassley who just but job a little while ago said it very well he said. He has a moderating personality. Of course harder. Ten hail. Apartment kept open this hearing room. Because he's. Nice Fella. And instinct is right that doesn't mean they're not gonna do it. Doesn't that will vote against it doesn't mean they can generate public opposition to but it is harder. You know where when someone that we don't just as Scully edges died last year just last year. And Hugh was up four a seat on the Supreme Court. And the two people two finalists that President Reagan wanted to consider for the supreme court's it was want Justice Scalia the other was Robert Bork. And and that was that famous conservative intellectual leader and Reagan into it's Scalia and liked him so much talked abort this Micah. So friendliness and good cheer can get so long way and as I said ultimately there is this. She's got tested the public adds. I walk the man's courtroom that woman's court. What I get aftershock. I think of course it does the job communicating whether it's true wells. That you would. It's a Terry here's the other thing I'm wondering about kind of playing in the background because obviously these hearings are not occurring in a vacuum. And Neil course it is the nominee of president trump president trump has sat at some pretty. Disparaging things about judges including the one who was hearing the case about trump university. He called the first judge struck down his travel ban this so called judge if you think those kinds of issues are gonna come up in the questioning. Judge course. I do I think president trump. Has made the job more difficult for judge corsets to get on the Supreme Court I think he's he's he's a strong position. But he will beef confront it and challenged with a lot of what president trump has said. And don't Democrats are going to want to force this nominee to show the dam and the American public. That she is independent. President truck that he will be able to stand apart from president trump is not afraid of that. That that he will be able to uphold. The independence of the judiciary and back. It got so intense on this subject that. Senator Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut Democrat. Brought the other hearing of the day ended this year. Where FBI director Karmi confirmed that there is an investigation and FBI and to get investigation into links. Between trump campaign. And and Russian intelligence potential acts and what senator Blumenthal so it was you it is possible. That you could be called for. To rule on a subpoena of the president of the United States to produce certain evidence. That happened once before in our history. When Richard Nixon's tapes were subpoenaed by a prosecutor and he defied has been always been court which unanimously found. That he would turn it over. But that that is how intense it's getting. That they want to really pressed this nominee challenge him. About the kinds of things that president trump is proposing and doing and saying and they have done. That there were seen demonstrated parents. An incredible overlapping and issues here or potentially even more dynamic tomorrow. So in new course it is going to face questions tomorrow Terry what do we expect happened that what are you watching for. Well if you pay about ten hours of questions he's he's got that good long day. I what I want it's really is first. What is that dynamic it that you touched on how much of the difference does that make this year's. By his personality. And Amal movement not a monument in Mali it you know that cities genial and nice and scenes. I'm and they are looking for a fight seems to want. Two to reach out to conversation that make a difference and wouldn't make a difference in votes that I also want to see what they go after him. Right now that a scattershot. Have each line of attack. And and so I think it'd be hard to convince the public. Is one thing got to know that you can't on the court. Because of and it acts we've seen what that is. Well tomorrow. On the Republican side I think that's just basically villages. Make speeches and take a break in between getting groped them. It's an interesting dynamic at play for sure it very and I can keep him here for hours talking about this kind of stuff that Waltz and you have other work to do. And I appreciate you taking the time for it but hopefully we check back in with you later this week like. Bake solid you for watching you don't forget we're gonna have live coverage of that first day of questioning for president trumps Supreme Court nominee. Judge Neal Boortz right here tomorrow check back with us that they break here related life is happening right now around the country it back advocates that the I think.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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