Republicans will take a major step Monday toward restoring the conservative majority on the Supreme Court lost last year when Justice Antonin Scalia’s death led to a political standoff involving all three branches of government.

The Senate Judiciary Committee is set to vote on the nomination of federal appeals court Judge Neil Gorsuch just 62 days after his nomination by President Trump — a vote Republicans denied President Barack Obama’s nominee, Merrick Garland, for 293 days last year.

That will set the stage for a showdown before week’s end in which Gorsuch’s confirmation isn’t really in doubt, but how it is achieved will have a profound impact on the high court, the Senate and the 2018 elections.

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