Senator Richard Blumenthal LAW ’73 (D-Conn.) told CNN on Wednesday evening that, in his meeting earlier that day with Neil Gorsuch, President Donald Trump’s Supreme Court nominee, the judge called Trump’s recent rebuke of the judiciary “disheartening” and “demoralizing.”
Gorsuch was referring to Trump’s Saturday tweet characterizing the federal judge who blocked his travel ban as a “so-called judge” Blumenthal’s account was confirmed by a White House advisor charged with facilitating Gorsuch’s confirmation process.
But early Thursday morning, Trump responded with an attack on the Senator’s honesty.
Sen.Richard Blumenthal, who never fought in Vietnam when he said for years he had (major lie),now misrepresents what Judge Gorsuch told him?
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 9, 2017
Trump was alluding to a 2010 New York Times report that, contrary to statements Blumenthal made at campaign events, he never served in Vietnam.
On CNN’s “New Day” with Chris Cuomo Thursday morning, Blumenthal reaffirmed that account “absolutely and accurately” reflected Gorsuch’s comments.
“I think that the President needs to hear from Judge Gorsuch about exactly what he is saying to myself and Senate colleagues,” Blumenthal told Cuomo. “Maybe he simply hasn’t been informed and that’s the reason for his tweet.”
Republican Senator Ben Sasse, R-Neb., and former Republican Senator Kelly Ayote, who is helping to expedite Gorsuch’s confirmation, both corroborated Blumenthal’s claim. Ayote said in a statement Thursday morning that Gorsuch “finds any criticism of a judge’s integrity and independence disheartening and demoralizing.” Likewise, Sasse said Gorsuch “got pretty passionate” during their meeting when asked about Trump’s comments regarding the “so-called judge.”