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Tuesday round-up

At Buzzfeed, Zoe Tillman reports that “Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch submitted his formal questionnaire to the Senate Judiciary Committee, answering questions about his past decisions and providing new details about the events leading up to his nomination.” In The Wall Street Journal, Beth Reinhard reports that “Gorsuch has scaled back a description of his pro bono work at Harvard Law School after questions arose about the extent of his involvement with two volunteer criminal-justice programs.”

In The Huffington Post, Ben Walsh looks at Gorsuch’s writings for the college publication he co-founded and edited at Columbia University, finding it “easy to imagine that in another universe, Gorsuch would have been a Never Trumper.” First Mondays (podcast) offers the second episode in its series on the Gorsuch nomination, which features a discussion of the judge’s high school and college yearbooks, his disclosures from his first judicial nomination, and his confirmation hearings for that nomination. For the Associated Press, Jeff Donn and Geoff Mulvihill survey Gorsuch’s first amendment jurisprudence, concluding that although the judge “has been a defender of free speech and a skeptic of libel claims,” his rulings in cases involving freedom of religion, in which “he repeatedly has sided with religious groups when they butt up against the secular state,” “reflect views more in line with the president and conservatives.”

In The Weekly Standard, Adam White suggests that as Gorsuch “spends the next weeks and months expounding upon our constitutional system, he could be the living example that inspires President Trump, his advisers, his supporters, and all of us to better appreciate the republican virtues that Gorsuch himself strives to embody.” In The Daily Beast, Julian Zelizer argues that “Senate Democrats have good reason to Bork Gorsuch” because as “they did in 1987, … Democrats face a nominee who comes from the far right and he symbolizes presidential choice that is clear statement of defiance.” In Slate, Mark Joseph Stern responds to suggestions that because Gorsuch “has gay friends and is not outwardly homophobic in his interactions with them,” he might be led to “rule in favor of gay rights,” arguing that “these amicable associations tell us virtually nothing about his jurisprudence” and that a “review of his past decisions, on the other hand, reveals a judge who is quite skeptical of LGBTQ claims and hesitant to insist that the government be made to respect LGBTQ people’s dignity.”

In USA Today, Richard Wolf marks the first anniversary of Justice Antonin Scalia’s death by examining his influence on the law and on the judge nominated to succeed him, noting that if “he is confirmed by the Senate, Gorsuch, 49, will represent the first generation of Supreme Court justices to have been influenced by Scalia’s rulings, writings and teachings while still in law school.” Constitution Daily looks at another aspect of Scalia’s legacy, noting that the late justice “was known for his well-written Supreme Court opinions and his obscure word choices” and citing “some Scaliaisms that remain with us today.”


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Recommended Citation: Edith Roberts, Tuesday round-up, SCOTUSblog (Feb. 14, 2017, 6:45 AM),