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The Senate confirmed Neil Gorsuch for the Supreme Court by Kellan Howell

UPDATE 11:58 a.m.

Voting has ended. Neil Gorsuch was confirmed to fill the Supreme Court seat left vacant for over a year after the death of Antonin Scalia by a vote of 54-45. 

Three Democratic Senators, Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakaota, Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Joe Donnelly of Indianna voted to confirm Gorsuch.  All three are facing tough re-election battles in 2018. 

Georgia Republican Sen. Johnny Isakson was absent. 

UPDATE 11:44 a.m. 

The Senate confirmed Neil Gorsuch to be the next Supreme Court justice. Sen. Rand Paul (R-Kentucky) cast the 51st vote making the confirmation official. 

UPDATE 11:31 a.m.

Voting has commenced on the confirmation of Neil Gorsuch, with Vice President Mike Pence presiding over the Senate. 

The Senate is poised to confirm Neil Gorsuch's nomination to fill the  Supreme Court seat left vacant after the death of Justice Antonin Scalia over a year ago.

Thanks to a historic vote on Thursday that changed Senate precedent to get rid of the 60-vote requirement to confirm a Supreme Court Justice, the Senate is expected to easily confirm Gorsuch today. 

All 52 Republicans Senators are expected to vote to confirm Gorsuch, and some Democrats facing tough 2018 elections vote "yes."

The rules change, commonly known as the 'nuclear option' came after Senate Democrats launched a filibuster to try to block Gorsuch's confirmation.