“I had a career in identifying absurdity. And I know it when I see it.”
Al Franken’s questioning crystallizes the haughty contempt and condescension Republicans generally and Judge Gorsuch in this instance often have—patriotic populist rhetoric notwithstanding—toward the everyday lives of working people, their “lived experience” as the phenomenologist would say. Gorsuch claims to have “empathy”* for the trucker but, as he forthrightly admits, he refused at the time, and refuses here once more, to imaginatively put himself in the shoes of Alphonse Maddin** on the day in question. See the decision in TransAm Trucking v. Administrative Review Board (2016).
Click on the video in the link for the full transcript of this portion of the confirmation hearing.
* “I empathize with him entirely.”