Senate Republicans deployed the so-called “nuclear option” Thursday afternoon in a bid to confirm Judge Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court, dramatically changing the way the Senate does business in order to overcome a Democratic filibuster.

In a fast-paced chain of events, majority Republicans voted to change Senate precedent so that a Supreme Court nominee can move to final confirmation with a simple majority of just 51 votes, as opposed to 60.  

Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., declared he did so to “restore norms” and get past what he called an “unprecedented” Democratic filibuster.

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