Tuesday, January 31, 2017

A younger and less abrasive Scalia

Trump picks Colo. appeals court judge Neil Gorsuch for Supreme Court

His moral and religious views seem also quite conservative.

Gorsuch said in a speech last spring that as a judge he had tried to follow Scalia’s path.

“The great project of Justice Scalia’s career was to remind us of the differences between judges and legislators,” Gorsuch told an audience at Case Western Reserve University School of Law in Cleveland.

Legislators “may appeal to their own moral convictions and to claims about social utility to reshape the law as they think it should be in the future,” Gorsuch said. 

But “judges should do none of these things in a democratic society.”

Instead, they should use “text, structure and history” to understand what the law is, “not to decide cases based on their own moral convictions or the policy consequences they believe might serve society best.”

But . . . .

Likewise, Gorsuch has not ruled on abortion. 

But activists on both sides of the issue believe they know where he stands. 

They point to language in his book “The Future of Assisted Suicide and Euthanasia,” in which he opines that “all human beings are intrinsically valuable and the intentional taking of human life by private persons is always wrong.”

Additionally, his rulings on behalf of those who challenged the Obamacare mandate that employee insurance coverage provide all approved contraceptives seemed instructive. 

He noted the provision would require the objecting businesses to “underwrite payments for drugs or devices that can have the effect of destroying a fertilized human egg.”

Hard to see that moral view playing no role in any future rulings on the matters at issue.

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