Neil Gorsuch in Washington, DC, on Feb. 1, 2017.
Drew Angerer—Getty Images
April 5, 2017 9:06 AM EDT

Debate is continuing on the Senate floor over Judge Neil Gorsuch’s nomination to be an Associate Justice on the Supreme Court.

Senator Jeff Merkely is delivering a speech that has several hours, in an attempt to draw attention to the debate and the nomination. The speech is not a filibuster, according to the Associated Press.

More than 40 Democrats have said they will vote against the nomination, leaving it vulnerable to a filibuster, which has increased the likelihood of the GOP and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell triggering the “nuclear option.” The phrase refers to changing Senate rules to confirm Gorsuch with a majority of 51 votes, instead of the current 60 needed to break a filibuster.

The vote on Gorsuch’s fate is expected on Friday. Watch the debate live, above.

More Must-Reads From TIME

Write to Zamira Rahim at

You May Also Like