I'll be watching whether Democratic Senators raise two issues in hearings:
- Torture: During the GW Bush administration, Gorsuch was one of the merry band of torture apologists at the Justice Department making up rationales for the divine right of the President to order whatever extra-legal measures he might like in his war on an adjective. It's going to be the supreme test of our legal system whether judges will constrain a runaway president who can always cook up a national "security" threat when he wants to justify something foul. My often disappointing Senior Senator, Diana Feinstein, is the lead Democrat on the Judiciary Committee and, after being mistreated by the CIA herself when looking into abuses, has developed a bee in her bonnet about torture. So she might push for answers in this area.
- Birthright citizenship: I don't know if any Democrat will raise this, but they should. Maybe Senator Maize Hirono of Hawaii could do it; it would be good to hear it from a person of color. The Trump/Bannon project of MAWA (Making America White Again) founders on the fact that anyone born in the country is automatically a citizen under current interpretations of Congressional citizenship statutes and the 14th Amendment to the Constitution. A citizen is any "person born in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof." But right wing legal activists hope that the application of this principle to children of undocumented immigrants could be ended by simple act of Congress, if concurred in by a sympathetic Supreme Court. They'll go there if they have a chance; the MAWA project is a desperation move, and fails so long as people of color can't be kept from citizenship whether by exclusion or voter suppression and/or incarceration. The great contemporary historian of the Reconstruction era when the US adopted birthright citizenship, Eric Foner, writes of birthright citizenship:
Those were a different kind of Republicans.