Wednesday, March 22 marked day three of the Senate Judiciary hearings to accept or reject Neil Gorsuch as President Trump’s pick to occupy the seat on the U.S Supreme Court that has been vacant following the February 2016 death of Antonin Scalia.

The hearings have been braided with anecdotes, some serious and some jovial, moments of tension and impassioned questions and answers, humor and verbal slips, such as Gorsuch’s use of the word “bigly” (big and boldly morphed) while describing John Hancock’s signature on the Declaration of Independence.

“That’s why John Hancock is now synonymous with his signature," Gorsuch stated.

"No one remembers who John Hancock was but they know that’s his signature because he wrote his name so bigly – big and boldly.”

Applying for the job of a lifetime

The 68-page questionnaire that nominee Gorsuch completed crystalized the importance of the application process. Sen. Al Franken (D-Minnesota) reinforced, “This is a job interview. You are applying for lifetime appointment to the highest court in the land.”

That Republications control the Senate (52-48) reduces the risk that Gorsuch will be “borked” – discredited and blocked from confirmation in the manner of Robert Bork (1987). The U.S. Senate rejected his nomination to the Supreme Court.

Gorsuch, having candidly stated previously that he speaks for himself, explained “originalist” from his standpoint.

He said the judicial philosophy means protection for all and that originalists (such as himself and Scalia) “try to understand what the words on the page mean — not import words that come from us….If the words are plain, you stop.”

Day 3 Supreme Court nomination highlights

Sen. Lindsay Graham (R-South Carolina) buried Justice Samuel Alito before his time.

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“Justice Alito passed away in February,” he said. “Bad news, bad mistake,” he said upon realizing his mistake.

After a lengthy spiel by Graham on the topic of abortion, Gorsuch said, “We’re one of seven nations that allow wholesale, on-demand, unlimited abortion at 20 weeks, the fifth month of pregnancy,” and “I’d like to get out of that club.”

On other hot button topics, Gorsuch dodged digging himself into a political hole by sidestepping specifics in issues such as: school desegregation, contraceptive rights, specific interrogation tactics, and warrantless wiretapping.

Respective of not delving into his personal views, Gorsuch’s responses did encapsulate his position, when summarized reads: “My personal views have nothing to do with my job as a judge” and “I’ve drawn a line that I think is required of a good judge to be fair and respect the separation of powers.”

Throughout the days’ hearings so far, Gorsuch has presented himself as respectful and circumspect. The discourse has been enlightening and, at times, entertaining, but mostly not boring when it comes to finding the right fit for one of the most important jobs in the United States.