Legal Scholars Concur, Gorsuch Is Great SCOTUS Pick

- February 2, 2017

Law Professors, Attorneys, And Judges All Agree: The Legal Community Is Gushing For Gorsuch


  • Republicans let the American People be heard and voters went to the polls in November knowing the next president of the United States would fill the vacancy.
  • Regardless of party or ideological beliefs, legal professionals from around the country are nearly unanimous in their praise of President Trump's pick for the Supreme Court, Judge Neil Gorsuch.
  • Former government lawyers and private attorneys have praised Gorsuch as "an extraordinary judge," "incredibly intelligent," and "very diligent."
  • Legal scholars have praised Gorsuch as "first rate," "an excellent judge," "highly qualified," and "widely respected."
  • Former federal judges have praised Gorsuch as having "absolutely impeccable credentials" and being a "very talented, gifted judge."


Legal Scholars Have Praised Gorsuch As "First Rate," "An Excellent Judge," "Highly Qualified," And "Widely Respected"

Princeton University Law Professor Robert P. George: Gorsuch Is "An Intellectual Superstar." "When it comes to fitness for judicial office, the first criterion usually considered is intellect and education, and here Gorsuch is off the charts. Even people who do not share his political outlook or judicial philosophy, but have read his judicial opinions, recognize him as an intellectual superstar." (Robert P. George, Op-Ed, "Ignore The Attacks On Neil Gorsuch. He's An Intellectual Giant - And A Good Man," The Washington Post , 2/1/17)

UCLA Law Professor Eugene Volokh: "Neil Gorsuch Is An Excellent Judge, Who Consistently Produces Readable, Careful, Thoughtful, Even Scholarly Opinions." "Neil Gorsuch is an excellent judge, who consistently produces readable, careful, thoughtful, even scholarly opinions; and his manner, both personal and written, may ultimately win more converts than did the brilliant but irascible Justice whom he would replace." ("What Could Gorsuch Mean for the Supreme Court?" Politico Magazine , 2/1/17)

Northwestern University Law Professor Eugene Kontorovich: "Judge Neil Gorsuch Is A Highly Qualified, Serious Judge." "Judge Neil Gorsuch is a highly qualified, serious judge-a conservative, but no firebrand." ("What Could Gorsuch Mean for the Supreme Court?" Politico Magazine , 2/1/17)

University of Virginia Law Professor Saikrishna Prakash: "Neil Gorsuch Is A 'Grand Slam' Choice. He Is A Phenomenal Writer And A First-Rate Intellect." "Neil Gorsuch is a 'grand slam' choice. He is a phenomenal writer and a first-rate intellect (a Marshall Scholar and a Truman Scholar). He is also a judge's judge; attentive to the craft of judging, he strives to pen clear and intelligible opinions, separate personal politics from his legal rulings, and respect other judges even when they disagree with him." ("What Could Gorsuch Mean for the Supreme Court?" Politico Magazine , 2/1/17)

George Washington University Law Professor And Constitutional Expert Jonathan Turley: Gorsuch Is A "Very Intelligent Person" Who Has A "Coherent And Consistent View Of The Constitution." "Constitutional expert Jonathan Turley told ABC News that Gorsuch is a 'very intelligent person' who would not be that different from Scalia, the justice he would be replacing. He has a 'coherent and consistent view of the constitution,' Turley said." (Audrey Taylor And Geneva Sands, "Judge Neil Gorsuch: What You Need To Know About The Possible SCOTUS Nominee," ABC News , 1/31/17)

University Of Notre Dame Law Professor Richard W. Garnett: "The Point Should Be Made Often And Simply: Opposition To Judge Gorsuch Can Only Be Political And Ideological; It Cannot Be Based On The Merits." "The point should be made often and simply: Opposition to Judge Gorsuch can only be political and ideological; it cannot be based on the merits." (Richard W. Garnett, "Judge Gorsuch's Prime-Time Humility," First Things , 2/1/17)

George Mason University Law Professor Ilya Somin: Gorsuch Is "Impressive And Widely Respected." "Judge Neil Gorsuch, President Trump's nominee for the Supreme Court, is an impressive and widely respected conservative jurist." ("What Could Gorsuch Mean for the Supreme Court?" Politico Magazine , 2/1/17)

Democrat, University Of Colorado Law Professor, And Former Clerk To Justice John Paul Stevens Melissa Hart: Gorsuch "Will Work To Try To Form Consensus On The Court." ANCHOR: "Gorsuch was also a teacher at the University of Colorado's law school in boulder. Melissa Hart, a fellow professor at that school, says that while she may not always agree with his conclusions, she knows he reaches them through an honest intellectual process." MELISSA HART: "I think he will work to try to form consensus on the court. He knows what it means to work in a group of people to reach a decision. And although I don't think he's going to compromise on his principles, I think he will be someone who reaches to other people to try to form consensus." (KKTV's "11 News At 6 AM," 2/1/17)

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Colorado University Law School Dean S. James Anaya: Gorsuch Is A "Distinguished Jurist… Our Students And Alumni Are Fortunate That He Has Taught And Continues To Teach In Our Classrooms." "In a statement, law school Dean S. James Anaya called Gorsuch a 'distinguished jurist… our students and alumni are fortunate that he has taught and continues to teach in our classrooms.'" (Trevor Hughes, "What Judge Neil Gorsuch's Colorado Colleagues Think Of Him," USA Today , 1/31/17)

Case Western Reserve University Law Professor Jonathan Adler: "I Don't Think There Is Any Question That Neil Gorsuch Is Supremely Well Qualified, Supremely Respected Across The Aisle, Across The Ideological Spectrum." JONATHAN ADLER: "I don't think there is any question that Neil Gorsuch is supremely well qualified, supremely respected across the aisle, across the ideological spectrum. He's really one of the foremost appellate judges in our country and clearly the sort of person we would normally want on the Supreme Court." (CNN's "At This Hour," 2/1/17)

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Florida International University Law Professor Elizabeth Price Foley: "Neil Gorsuch's Nomination Is A Clear Indicator That President Trump Is Prioritizing The Selection Of Jurists Committed To Restoring The Constitution's Original Meaning." "Neil Gorsuch's nomination is a clear indicator that President Trump is prioritizing the selection of jurists committed to restoring the Constitution's original meaning, particularly its separation of powers." ("What Could Gorsuch Mean for the Supreme Court?" Politico Magazine , 2/1/17)

Former Federal Judges Have Praised Gorsuch As Having "Absolutely Impeccable Credentials"

Former Federal Judge John L. Carroll: Gorsuch Has "Absolutely Impeccable Credentials. You Can Not Attack His Background." ANCHOR: "You can't argue with his resume right?" JOHN CARROLL: "You cannot, I mean this is a judge who has absolutely impeccable credentials. You can not attack his background, his credentials or anything about him." (FOX 34's "Good Day Alabama," 2/1/17)

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Clinton Appointee and Former Tenth Circuit Judge Robert H. Henry Praised Gorsuch As A "Brilliant Legal" Scholar. "Henry said Judge Carlos Lucero of Denver came to the court as an expert in water law and environmental law, while Michael McConnell of Salt Lake City and Neil Gorsuch of Denver were brilliant legal scholars who also brought experience from working at the Justice Department." (Robert Boczkiewicz, "Judge Captures Top Seat In Federal Court Of Appeals," The Oklahoman, 12/31/07)

  • Henry: Gorsuch Is "A Great Candidate" And "A Very Talented, Gifted Judge" Whose "Writing Is Elegant And Clear." "'I think he's a great candidate,' Henry said, adding that he thought Gorsuch had the judicial temperament to fit in well with other Supreme Court justices. 'Neil is a very talented, gifted judge,' Henry said. 'His writing is elegant and clear. ... His writing is really good and careful and measured.'" (Randy Ellis, "Federal Appellate Judge With Oklahoma Ties Among Top U.S. Supreme Court Candidates," The Oklahoman, 1/29/17)

Former Government Lawyers And Private Attorneys Have Praised Gorsuch As "An Extraordinary Judge," "Incredibly Intelligent," And "Very Diligent"

Obama Administration Acting Solicitor General And Professor At Georgetown University Neal K. Katyal: "I Have No Doubt That If Confirmed, Judge Gorsuch Would Help To Restore Confidence In The Rule Of Law." "I have no doubt that if confirmed, Judge Gorsuch would help to restore confidence in the rule of law. His years on the bench reveal a commitment to judicial independence - a record that should give the American people confidence that he will not compromise principle to favor the president who appointed him." (Neal K. Katyal, Op-Ed, "Why Liberals Should Back Neil Gorsuch," The New York Times , 1/31/17)

  • Katyal: Gorsuch Is "An Extraordinary Judge And Man." "Until Tuesday, when he nominated an extraordinary judge and man, Neil Gorsuch, to be a justice on the Supreme Court." (Neal K. Katyal, Op-Ed, "Why Liberals Should Back Neil Gorsuch," The New York Times , 1/31/17)
  • Katyal: Gorsuch "Brings A Sense Of Fairness And Decency To The Job, And A Temperament That Suits The Nation's Highest Court." "But I have seen him up close and in action, both in court and on the Federal Appellate Rules Committee (where both of us serve); he brings a sense of fairness and decency to the job, and a temperament that suits the nation's highest court." (Neal K. Katyal, Op-Ed, "Why Liberals Should Back Neil Gorsuch," The New York Times , 1/31/17)

Former White House Lawyer John Adams: Gorsuch Is "Incredibly Intelligent," "Polished," "Kind," "Gracious," And A "Wonderful Pick." JOHN ADAMS: "But I think like the American people saw last night, he's an incredibly intelligent man, but he's also a very kind, gracious and polished person. And so he's certainly not a Scalia clone in the sense he has some views that are different than the late justice. But he's a wonderful, wonderful pick for the administration, and I think the American people are going to not only respect his credentials, but as they get to know him, they're going to like him." (CNN'S "Newsroom," 2/1/17)

Kansas Solicitor General Stephen McAllister: Gorsuch Is "Very Diligent, Fair, And Intelligent." ANCHOR: "Professor Stephen McAllister says he is confident Gorsuch will be a fair justice." STEPHEN MCALLISTER: "He's a very diligent, fair, and intelligent person who will be very careful. He always is about every case. So he's not somebody who just says I know how I want this to come out. How do I get there? He's much more I've got to look at the text, I've got to look at the history. I'll look at the cases, what am I supposed to do as a judge?" (KCTV's "KCTV 5 News this Morning," 2/1/17)

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Former Supreme Court Attorney And Legal Blogger Michelle Olsen: "Judge Gorsuch Will Fit Very Well Into The Current Court. The Justices Know And Respect Him." "Judge Gorsuch will fit very well into the current court. The justices know and respect him." ("What Could Gorsuch Mean for the Supreme Court?" Politico Magazine , 2/1/17)

Democrat Colorado Attorney Marcy Glenn On A Judge Gorsuch Ruling: "He Issued A Decision That Most Certainly Focused On The Little Guy." "Marcy Glenn, a Denver attorney and Democrat, recalls two cases before Gorsuch in which she represented underdogs. In one, a college student faced criminal libel charges for mocking a professor; the court upheld the student's right to file a claim against the prosecutor. In the second, homeowners sued over illnesses stemming from an old nuclear weapons facility outside Denver. Gorsuch revived their class-action lawsuit in a novelistic, 38-page ruling that began, 'Harnessing nuclear energy is a delicate business.' 'He issued a decision that most certainly focused on the little guy,' Glenn said." (Nicholas Riccardi, "Gorsuch: Conservative Court Nominee Praised By Some Liberals," The Associated Press , 1/31/17)

President Of The National Constitution Center Jeffery Rosen: Trump "Couldn't Have Picked A More Effective Respected Conservative Intellectual." CNN'S WOLF BLITZER: "He does have an impressive record. You've studied his legal background Jeffrey. Tell us a little more about that." JEFFERY ROSEN: "So if President Trump makes no other decisions that are praised by both sides this will be the most memorable. He couldn't have picked a more effective respected conservative intellectual. What is striking about judge Gorsuch is you saw how well-spoken he is and folksy and humble. I knew him, I clerked with him years ago on the DC Circuit Court of Appeals. He worked for Judge Sentelle I clerked for Judge Mikva. He really got along with both sides but what's striking is like Justice Scalia this man can change the terms of debate on the Supreme Court. He's written a fascinating book published by Princeton University Press 2006, he went back to Oxford after graduating from Harvard to finish this dissertation studying with natural law theorists." (CNN's " Anderson Cooper 360," 1/31/17)


Harvard Law Professor Laurence Tribe: "Gorsuch Is As Smart As He Is Conservative, And He Writes Elegantly." "Gorsuch is as smart as he is conservative, and he writes elegantly. Hardiman is a friend of Trump's sister. Whom do YOU think T will name?" (Laurence Tribe, Twitter Feed , 1/31/17)

Boulder County, Colorado's Democrat District Attorney, Stan Garnett, Has Called Gorsuch "Very Ethical" And "Very Smart." "Boulder County District Attorney Stan Garnett, a Democrat, described Gorsuch as 'very ethical' and 'very smart.'" (Erica Meltzer, "Neil Gorsuch Is A Judge In The 'Scalia Mold,' And His Liberal Students Love Him," Denverite , 1/31/17)

President Jimmy Carter Appointee And United States District Court Judge John L. Kane: Gorsuch Is Admired By His Fellow Judges, And "He Writes Opinions In A Unique Style That Has More Verve And Vitality" Than Others. "Judge John L. Kane, who was appointed to the Federal District Court in Denver by President Jimmy Carter, said Judge Gorsuch was admired by his fellow judges. 'He writes opinions in a unique style that has more verve and vitality than any other judges I study on a regular basis,' Judge Kane said." (Michael D. Shear and Adam Liptak, "A Supreme Court Pick Is Promised. A Political Brawl Is Certain," The New York Times , 1/24/17)

University Of Colorado Law Professor, Former Clerk To Justice John Paul Stevens, And Democrat Melissa Hart: Gorsuch "Just Treats People Well In Every Context." "'He has very strong opinions, but he just treats people well in every context,' said Melissa Hart, a University of Colorado law professor. She is a Democrat who clerked for Justice John Paul Stevens, who retired in 2010." (Robert Barnes, "Neil Gorsuch Naturally Equipped For His Spot On Trump's Supreme Court Shortlist," The Washington Post ¸ 1/28/17)

  • Hart: Gorsuch Has "Smarts And Intellectual Seriousness." "If Gorsuch does join the bench, she expects she will disagree with many of his rulings, but predicts he has the 'smarts and intellectual seriousness' to become a 'shaper of the court.'" (Andrew Hamm, "Judge Neil Gorsuch - Colorado Native And Washington, D.C., Veteran," SCOTUSBlog , 1/30/17)

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