Our country prioritized the Supreme Court as the most important factor when voting last year. President Donald Trump, with the nomination of Judge Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court, has fulfilled his campaign promise of “a pro-life justice in the mold of Justice Scalia.”
Though he has yet to rule explicitly on abortion, Gorsuch asserted in his 2006 book The Future of Assisted Suicide and Euthanasia that “human life is intrinsically valuable and intentional killing is always wrong,” a principle that has been dutifully reflected throughout his extensive and impressive career.
After graduating cum laude from Harvard Law School and clerking for Judge David Sentelle in the D.C. Circuit Court, Gorsuch clerked for Supreme Court Justice Byron R. White, whom Gorsuch cited as a mentor during his nomination announcement. White, a staunch critic of Roe v. Wade, is famous for his 1986 dissent in Thornburgh v. American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, in which he refers to abortion as the death of a physical person. Gorsuch noted this dissent in his book.
Gorsuch’s service on the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals has since bolstered his reputation as one with deep respect for life. As a nominee, he was confirmed rapidly with bipartisan support — not one vote was cast against him, not even from Senators Clinton, Obama or Schumer. The American Bar Association gave him a unanimous “well-qualified” rating.
Gorsuch recently said, “Judges should be in the business of declaring what the law is using the traditional tools of interpretation, rather than pronouncing the law as they might wish it to be in light of their own political views, always with an eye on the outcome, and engaged perhaps in some Benthamite calculation of pleasures and pains along the way.” This point is especially popular with the large majority of American people. According to a January poll from Marist, eight out of ten Americans want a Supreme Court justice who will interpret the Constitution as it was originally written.
By recognizing in both Hobby Lobby v. Sebelius and Little Sisters v. Burwell that the Affordable Care Act’s mandate is oppressive to many consciences, and by showing that even a stillborn baby’s rights deserve protection in Pino v. United States, Gorsuch consistently affirms that, as an originalist, he would have all rights to life in mind as a Justice.
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