With his pick to fill the still-vacant U.S. Supreme Court justice position, President Donald Trump made up for some early blunders.
“President Donald Trump nominated Neil Gorsuch, a fast-rising conservative judge with a writer’s flair, to the Supreme Court on Tuesday, a selection expected to spark a fierce fight with Democrats over a jurist who could shape America’s legal landscape for decades to come,” The Associated Press reported.
At 49, Gorsuch is the youngest Supreme Court nominee in a quarter century. He’s distinguished himself on the Denver-based 10th Circuit Court of Appeals with his clear, colloquial writing, advocacy for court review of government regulations, defense of religious freedom and skepticism toward law enforcement.
From the evidence so far, Neil Gorsuch has the qualities anyone considered for justice of the highest court should have: a strong understanding and respect for the nation’s founding document, the U.S. Constitution.
“In his more than a decade as a federal judge, he has demonstrated a respect for the letter of the law, the intent of our Founding Fathers and the ideals of our Constitution,” U.S. Rep. Evan Jenkins said regarding the nominee.
Trump’s choice of Gorsuch marks perhaps the most significant decision of his young presidency, the AP reported. After an uneven start, including the chaotic rollout of a controversial refugee ban, Trump’s selection of Gorsuch appeared to proceed with little drama.
News readers will recall that during the campaign, Trump released a list of 21 potential Supreme Court nominees. All appeared to be respectable choices — excellent counterbalances to Barack Obama’s pick, Merrick Garland, to replace the late Antonin Scalia.
In his years in the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals, Garland never met a regulation he didn’t like, and he made rulings in favor of federal bureaucracies 77 percent of the time and against business 90 percent of the time, according to the National Federation of Independent Businesses.
The Republican-controlled Senate was right to hold off its “consent” of Garland as a justice, preferring to await the election and hope for a much better pick.
And Gorsuch is a much better pick.
“Judge Neil Gorsuch is a well-respected, seasoned judge with unparalleled qualifications and experience,” said U.S. Sen. Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.Va.
Now the question is whether Senate Democrats will fight Gorsuch’s nomination in retribution for Republicans not holding hearings on Obama’s pick of Garland.
Yet Gorsuch has come before that body before.
“In 2006, Judge Gorsuch was confirmed to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit by the Senate without a single dissenting vote,” Capito said. “He has a strong record of putting the rule of law first and carefully considering the text and history of the Constitution.”
While conservatives and constitutional supporters are happy with Trump’s pick of Gorsuch, liberals need not worry. According to the AP, he is not expected to call into question high-profile rulings on abortion, gay marriage and other issues in which the court has been divided 5-4 in recent years.
Congratulations to President Trump on a quality pick for Supreme Court justice and for doing so without the clatter of some of his previous executive orders. Let’s hope the president and his staff can show such thoughtfulness and maturity in future presidential decisions.