Neil Gorsuch: What You Need to Know

Neil_Gorsuch_10th_Circuit CC.jpg

Tonight, January 31, 2017, President Trump nominated Neil McGill Gorsuch to the United States Supreme Court.  I am very pleased with the choice, and I am confident that many Conservatives are as well.

Biography

Gorsuch was born on August 29, 1967, in Denver, CO.  He moved to Washington D.C. as a teenager, because his mother (Anne Gorsuch Burford) was appointed as the head of the EPA by President Reagan.  His education is as follows:

  • Graduated from Georgetown Preparatory School in 1985
  • In 1988, he received a B.A. from Columbia University
  • In 1991, he earned his J.D. from Harvard Law School
  • In 2004, he became a Doctor of Philosophy in Law from University College at Oxford University.

His career has included clerking for a judge on the United States Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit (1991-1992), clerking for Supreme Court Justices Byron White and Anthony Kennedy (1993-1994), practicing law in D.C. (1995-2005), and serving as Principal Deputy to the Associate Attorney General at the United States Department of Justice (2005-2006).  He has served on the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit since 2006, having been appointed by George W. Bush.

Positions

  • Gorsuch is an originalist and textualist in the mold of the late Justice Antonin Scalia.
  • He sided with Hobby Lobby when the issue of contraceptives and the Affordable Care Act came up.  He said, “The ACA’s mandate requires them to violate their religious faith by forcing them to lend an impermissible degree of assistance to conduct their religion teaches to be gravely wrong.”
  • The Hobby Lobby case is not the only one where he has sided in favor of religious liberty.  He has made such decisions regularly.
  • Gorsuch is firmly against judicial activism:
    • “[Judges should strive] to apply the law as it is, focusing backward, not forward, and looking to text, structure, and history to decide what a reasonable reader at the time of the events in question would have understood the law to be—not to decide cases based on their own moral convictions or the policy consequences they believe might serve society best.”
    • “American liberals have become addicted to the courtroom, relying on judges and lawyers rather than elected leaders and the ballot box, as the primary means of effecting their social agenda.”
  • He has never had to make an official decision on Roe v Wade, but based on his book, The Future of Assisted Suicide and Euthanasia, many speculate that he is pro-life.
  • He is firmly against euthanasia.

My Thoughts

Gorsuch is an excellent pick.  He is a shining example of Conservatism and rule of law, a fitting pick for Scalia’s replacement.  He holds strong convictions, but being an originalist, I believe he will uphold the historic intentions of the law regardless of his personal beliefs.

I am extremely interested to see the reaction of the “Never Trump” movement.  The issue of the Supreme Court is the very thing that shifted many people’s opinion on the movement.  I hope and pray that many hearts will be softened, but that we will remain vigilant to defend our beliefs and values.

What Can We Do?

First off, we need to pray.  We need to pray that our country will continue on the straight and narrow path.  We need to pray that the Supreme Court will defend our values and Constitutional rights.  And ultimately, we need to pray that God will move in and direct the hearts of our leaders.

Second, we need to contact our Senators.  Although I believe Gorsuch will be confirmed despite resistance, our voice still needs to be heard.  The less divisive the confirmation, the quicker we can get back to unifying and depolarizing our nation.

Third, spread the word.  Let people know the qualifications of Gorsuch.  Let them know that you stand with him and encourage them to contact their Senators.  This process could get nasty, people are already protesting the nomination, but that should never affect people’s views of qualifications, truths, and values.

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