Who is Judge Neil Gorsuch?

From Fox News, 1-31-17:


President Trump announced Tuesday that he has tapped Judge Neil Gorsuch to fill the Supreme Court seat left vacant by Justice Antonin Scalia – a nominee who is in many ways similar to the man whose seat he hopes to fill.

Gorsuch, like Scalia, is a textualist and an originalist who believes judges should follow the text and original meaning of the Constitution. He has a record of standing up for religious liberty and swiftly met with approval Tuesday night from conservatives hoping for a Scalia-like pick.

In his remarks alongside the president at the White House, Gorsuch also gave a nod to Scalia, calling him a “lion of the law.”

And he vowed if confirmed to be a “faithful servant” of the Constitution and the law. “It is the role of judges to apply,” not alter, the laws written by Congress, he said.

“You’ve entrusted me with a most solemn assignment,” Gorsuch said.

An academic study from November comparing top court prospects to Scalia — based on judicial philosophy and other factors — put Gorsuch second among Trump’s “List of 21” for his “Scalia-ness.” His views on criminal law (including the death penalty), interstate commerce, and religious liberty match much of Scalia’s jurisprudence.

Gorsuch, 49, is a strict opponent of judicial activism, writing in a 2016 law review article that “judges should be in the business of declaring what the law is using the traditional tools of interpretation, rather than pronouncing the law as they might wish it to be in light of their own political views.”

Gorsuch is currently on the 10th Circuit of the U.S. Court of Appeals based in Denver, having previously clerked for Supreme Court Justices Byron White and Anthony Kennedy. He also was a high-ranking official in the George W. Bush Justice Department before his judicial appointment under the Republican president.

On the court of appeals, Gorsuch ruled against the Obama administration in two major cases concerning religious liberty, Hobby Lobby v. Sebelius and Little Sisters of the Poor v. Burwell – both of which concerned Christian groups objecting to the ObamaCare contraceptive mandate. His positions were affirmed by the Supreme Court.

There still are a number of question marks over his conservative record. He has, for instance, never written an opinion on the constitutional right to an abortion. However, some legal scholars say his 2009 book questioning laws allowing assisted suicide makes parallels to the questions surrounding abortion and whether intentionally ending human life is wrong.

He is known for his conversational writing style, and also for using popular cultural references in explaining his views. One notable 2012 ruling on workplace injury liability included this gem: “Haunted houses may be full of ghosts, goblins, and guillotines, but it’s their more prosaic features that pose the real danger. Tyler Hodges found that out when an evening shift working the ticket booth ended with him plummeting down an elevator shaft. ”

Gorsuch is married to Marie Louise Gorsuch, and they have two teenage daughters. His mother is Anne Burford who was the first female administrator at the Environmental Protection Agency.


 According to other reports Judge Gorsuch has the approval of the NRA and Senator Ted Cruz, who says Gorsuch is a home run.

“He has a decade of proven experience on the court of appeals of being faithful to the Constitution, following the law, protecting the Bill of Rights and our fundamental liberties, and I think that record will yield a swift confirmation in the United States Senate.”

The Dems are already whining that Gorsuch is stealing Merrick Garland’s empty seat. That being the case and assuming they bother to show up at all, it means the libs will fight tooth and nail over his confirmation and drag it out forever.


Categories: Political

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3 replies

  1. “….faithful to the Constitution….”

    Well that’s not going to sit well with Democrats.

    What concerns me is that Republicans have – as usual – shot themselves in the foot from the public perception standpoint because they – as usual – made the wrong argument against Merrick Garland and most are now making the wrong argument in favor of Gorsuch. The mantra is that Gorsuch is “well qualified.” Democrats are seizing on this justification to make the argument that Garland was well qualified too. I can see why that would make sense to Democrats.

    But Garland, I can only presume, is not an originalist. THAT was the reason he wouldn’t have passed the “qualified” test, and Republicans should have made that clear right from the start. Instead the perception will be that they’re playing politics with this vacancy, and perception matters.


    • “Well that’s not going to sit well with Democrats.”

      You probably didn’t intend that statement to be funny, but it made me chuckle because absolutely NOTHING sits well with the Dems, outside of completely caving in, and this SCOTUS selection is no different.

      The Dems are saying all sorts of vile and negative things about Gorsuch, even though he was unanimously confirmed as district judge in 2006. Pelosi said today that “if you breathe air, drink water, eat food, take medicine, or in any other way, interact with the courts, this is a very bad decision.”

      Some things just never ever change no matter who’s in charge. You’re correct about the Republicans, as they have again missed a huge opportunity to change the perception, but instead allowed themselves to be put on the defensive. They are in dire need of a new PR man or a coach with some new plays.



      • I was taking a shot at the depths to which Democrats have sunk, Kathy. In a normal world it would be an outrage and a scandal that faithfulness to the Constitution is considered by Democrats to be a strike AGAINST a Supreme Court nominee. Nowadays we just take it as a known fact. As Trump would say: sad.

        Love the tweet by Pence! He should make a habit of having those tweets proofread first, though. Democrat leaders can destroy the country and get away with it but a misspelled word can be career suicide for a Republican.

        Liked by 1 person

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