On January 31, 2017 Judge Neil Gorsuch of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit was officially nominated by President Donald J. Trump to fill the U.S. Supreme Court vacancy. The vacancy was created by the passing of Justice Antonin Scalia last year on February 13, 2016.
Born in Denver, Colorado, he moved to Washington, D.C. when his mother, Anne Gorsuch Burford, was appointed as the first female head of the United States Environmental Protection Agency. He went on to graduate from Columbia University with honors and earn his Juris Doctor degree from Harvard Law School, where he received a Truman Scholarship. As a Marshall Scholar, he received a Doctor of Philosophy degree in Law from Oxford University in 2004.
His professional career includes clerking for Judge David Sentelle of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, as well as for two Supreme Court Justices Byron White and Anthony Kennedy. Gorsuch then worked in private practice at Kellogg, Huber, Hansen, Todd, Evans & Figel. He also served as a Deputy Associate Attorney General at the U.S. Department of Justice until his appointment by President George W. Bush to the Tenth Circuit of the U.S. Court of Appeals where he was confirmed by the U.S. Senate without opposition on July 20, 2006.
If confirmed, Neil Gorsuch will be the 113th Justice, the youngest judge to be appointed to the Supreme Court in 25 years, and the first former clerk in history to serve on the bench alongside the justice (Kennedy) he served.
Read Gorsuch’s law review articles in HeinOnline, by accessing the list on his author profile page:
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As a decade-long judge of the Tenth Circuit of the U.S. Court of Appeals, Judge Gorsuch has ruled on cases that cover a wide spectrum of issues. Among other rulings that came to national attention, is Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc. v. Sebelius (723 F.3d 1114) where Gorsuch sided in favor of “religious freedom” claims made by the Little Sisters of the Poor and the owners of the craft company Hobby Lobby, who challenged language in the Affordable Care Act that required them to pay for contraceptive coverage for employees. In Burwell, Secretary of Health and Human Services v. Hobby Lobby Stores, the U.S. Supreme Court later affirmed the previous ruling in a divided vote in 2014.
Given the current political landscape, the path ahead for Judge Gorsuch should be interesting.
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