Candidate Trump played an ace card when he released the list of probable U.S. Supreme Court nominees: many Republicans and Independents, and even some Libertarians, who were hesitant to endorse or vote for the wealthy businessman with no conservative track record, took notice with the list of constructionist jurists.
Though skepticism was rampant, that list stirred up new winds in the sails of a surprisingly successful bid for the presidency. Releasing the list was an unbelievably savvy move. But some doubts remained. Would President-Elect Trump keep his promise and fill the seat vacated by the untimely death of the beloved and constitutionally-faithful Antonin Scalia?
Americans did not have to wait long. On Tuesday, January 31, President Donald J. Trump announced his pick for SCOTUS: Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Neil Gorsuch.
Gorsuch then attended Harvard Law School — paid in part by an awarded Truman Scholarship for superb leadership qualities — and was an editor on the Harvard Journal of Law & Public Policy. He graduated cum laude in 1991 with a Juris Doctor degree.
Neil Gorsuch then attended Oxford as a Marshall Scholar and earned a Doctor of Philosophy degree in Law in 2004. But Gorsuch will always claim his greatest blessing bestowed by Oxford was his wife Mary “Louise.”
The SCOTUS confirmation hearings begin Tuesday, March 21, but on Monday the Senate Judiciary Committee featured opening statements by committee members, most of whom used the time to stump their preferred pet causes. Senator Diane Feinstein immediately lectured on a woman’s right to privacy (no mention of a pre-born infant’s right to life) and harped ad nauseam re dangerous “assault weapons.” In fact, all of the Dems repeated their tiresome fear-mongering.
But then came the shining moment when Judge Neil Gorsuch was given time, after dutifully swearing to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, to give his statement.
And it was much more than a statement.
Judge Gorsuch was humble and touching and grateful, his rhetoric unexpectedly and completely moving. The judge only spoke for a little over 17 minutes, but it’s worth a listen.
Beginning by thanking those in his life, Judge Gorsuch paid a special, tear-worthy tribute to his wife:
Mister Chairman, I could not even attempt to do this without Louise, my wife of more than twenty years. The sacrifices she has made, and her open and giving heart — they leave me in awe. I love you so much.
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer promises to fight the Gorsuch nomination, as written at the Chicago Tribune:
But in a sign that Democrats were immediately ramping up resistance, Minority Leader Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., and several colleagues declared that Gorsuch would need to earn at least 60 votes to clear procedural hurdles to earn a final confirmation vote. Republicans hold 52 seats in the Senate.
“The burden is on Judge Neil Gorsuch to prove himself to be within the legal mainstream and, in this new era, willing to vigorously defend the Constitution from abuses of the Executive branch and protect the constitutionally enshrined rights of all Americans,” Schumer said. “Given his record, I have very serious doubts about Judge Gorsuch’s ability to meet this standard.”
Good old Chuck AKA the Obstructionist Curmudgeon. He can try. He can blather.
But Gorsuch’s intellect, character, integrity, and amazing heart filled with love for his wife, his daughters, Colorado, America and the U.S. Constitution dwarf the petty ambitions and schemes wielded by the bitter, New York Democratic Senator.
Add to that Judge Gorsuch’s startling law and Constitution acuity, and the Senate is faced with confirmation of a man, a justice, who would make Justice Scalia proud.
Well done, President Trump — another promise kept.