He explains why he rejects those critics and instead sides with Justice Scalia in believing that “an assiduous focus on text, structure, and history is essential to the proper exercise of the judicial function.” The Constitution itself carefully separates the legislative and judicial powers.
Whereas the legislative power is the “power to prescribe new rules of general applicability for the future,” the judicial power is a “means for resolving disputes about what existing law is and how it applies to discrete cases and controversies.” This separation of powers is “among the most important liberty-protecting devices of the constitutional design.” Among other things, if judges were to act as legislators by imposing their preferences as constitutional dictates, “how hard it would be to revise this so-easily-made judicial legislation to account for changes in the world or to fix mistakes.” Indeed, the “very idea of self-government would seem to wither to the point of pointlessness.” As Gorsuch put it (in contributor, in 2005 (before he took the bench), Gorsuch lamented that “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 on everything from gay marriage to assisted suicide to the use of vouchers for private-school education.” At 49 years of age, Gorsuch has already served for more than a decade on the U. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit, which reviews decisions of the federal district courts in the states of Colorado, Kansas, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Utah, and Wyoming.
To those of us who remember the Bork hearings, it’s all a rerun. Somehow, it’s been cranked to such a level that you have to wonder if the best way to make money these days is to invest in blood-pressure medications. Circuit, Judge Kavanaugh “has a keen intellect, exceptional analytical skills, and sound judgment.” This confidence was well-placed. Judge Kavanaugh, however, apparently doesn’t subscribe to this view. As former Attorney General Edwin Meese has said, “Judge Kavanaugh follows the same pattern as Justice Neil Gorsuch, a fair and independent jurist who will faithfully apply the law as written and honor the Constitution.” Applying the law as written — imagine.
Judge Kavanaugh’s record shows that the dire warnings being sounded about him are vastly overstated. Ten years later, in 2016, legal expert John Malcolm included him on a list of potential Supreme Court nominees, noting: “Since joining the bench, Kavanaugh has distinguished himself as a thoughtful, apolitical jurist, who is not afraid to stake out bold positions on complex issues.” One word in that sentence shows why the judge is being demonized by the left: “apolitical.” In their world, the judiciary is meant to be an unelected body of legislators who find all kinds of hidden meanings in the plain text of the U. That’s not what the left wants to hear, which is why they constantly (and improperly) ask Supreme Court nominees how they will rule on certain hot-button issues, from abortion to Obamacare.
In 2013, he determined that Hobby Lobby was entitled under the federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act to relief from the HHS Obamacare mandate that would have required it to provide its employees insurance coverage for abortifacient drugs and devices.
(By a 5–4 vote, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of Hobby Lobby in 2014.) In 2015, he objected vigorously to a Tenth Circuit ruling that held that the massive fines that the Obama administration threatened to impose on the Little Sisters of the Poor for refusing to facilitate insurance coverage for contraceptives and abortifacients did not seriously implicate their religious liberty.
It wasn’t always this way, hard as that may be to believe.
Seriously — look up “bork” in Merriam-Webster’s online dictionary, and you’ll read: “to attack or defeat (a nominee or candidate for public office) unfairly through an organized campaign of harsh public criticism.” “Unfairly” indeed.
In a case involving a firearms conviction (), Gorsuch protested that “people sit in prison because our circuit’s case law allows the government to put them there without proving a statutorily specified element of the charged crime.” In support of his interpretation of the statute, Gorsuch invoked, quoting Justice Thomas, the “long tradition of widespread lawful gun ownership by private individuals in this country” and the Supreme Court’s recognition that the Second Amendment “protects an individual’s right to own firearms and may not be infringed lightly.” On criminal law and procedure, Gorsuch has a strong and balanced record.
He has protected the privacy rights of Americans while respecting the proper powers of the police.