Former New Hampshire Senator Kelly Ayotte says she's certain U.S. Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch will be confirmed, even if it means changing Senate rules to overcome a Democrat-led filibuster.
“You would hope the Senate would allow this exceptionally qualified nominee to receive an up-or-down vote,” Ayotte reportedly said on a conference call Friday.
Ayotte was tapped by President Trump to usher his nominee through the confirmation process.
She accused Democrats of “blocking the process.”
New Hampshire Senators Jeanne Shaheen and Maggie Hassan have said they will vote against Gorsuch's nomination, joining other Democrats in opposing Trump's pick.
Senate Republicans may be forced to invoke the so-called nuclear option, changing Senate rules to confirm Gorsuch with a simple majority.
The Senate Judiciary Committee is expected to vote on Gorsuch's nomination Monday, with a vote by the full Senate expected by the end of the week.
Ayotte was among Republicans Senators who refused to hold a hearing last year on President Obama’s Supreme Court pick, Merrick Garland, to fill the seat left vacant by the death of Justice Antonin Scalia.
Ayotte defended her position.
“As I made clear in my election, we wanted the people of this country to weigh in by whom they chose as president, and that has happened. Had Hillary Clinton succeeded in winning, I would have allowed her nominee and up-or-down vote.”