The futility of filibustering Neil Gorsuch

To filibuster or not to filibuster — that is the question facing Democrats over the next couple of weeks, as Neil Gorsuch’s nomination prepares to move out of the Senate Judiciary Committee.

The answer should be obvious: Don’t filibuster.

While it may be satisfying for Democrats justifiably furious about the way former President Obama’s nominee to the court was treated by Republicans last year, a Gorsuch filibuster would likely backfire, depriving Democrats of the leverage they may soon need to exert influence over the next, and far more crucial, Supreme Court nomination.

This doesn’t mean that Democrats need to support Gorsuch’s nomination. If they consider him too ideologically conservative, they’re well within their rights to cast a vote against him on the Senate floor. But they shouldn’t use a filibuster to block his nomination from receiving an up-or-down vote in the first place.