How Mitch McConnell stole a Supreme Court seat

Claudine Rigal
Avril 17, 2017

Gorsuch thus represents not just a return to work for the Supreme Court but also a return to the days when wheeling and dealing were in the back seat while common sense and civility was in the driver's seat in the Senate.

The confirmation of Justice Neil Gorsuch essentially maintains the ideological balance of the court with four reliable liberal votes, four reliable conservative votes and the swing vote of Anthony Kennedy, for whom Justice Gorsuch once clerked. The most junior justice listens close and takes notes for everyone else.

"Elections have consequences", she said.

During the whole process, Roberts said, "the Supreme Court has been quietly going about its business of deciding the cases before it, according to the Constitution, in a completely nonpartisan way". The menial duties for the newest justice are a part of tradition, but not a bad deal for a job that comes with lifetime tenure and the prestige of a high court seat.

Speaking ahead of Gorsuch at the ceremony, Trump said that "our country is counting on you to be wise, impartial and fair, to serve under our laws, not over them, and to safeguard the right of the people to govern their own affairs", hinting at his own friction with the judiciary.

"Literally, if I'm like in the middle of a sentence - let's say it's my turn to speak or something - and there's a knock on the door, everybody will just stare at me, waiting for me to open the door", Kagen explained.

Kagen said the responsibilities are "like a form of hazing", but all in jest as a way to appreciate the great job justices have.

This year, Sen. Schumer announced that Democrats would attempt to filibuster Justice Gorsuch. Nominated by then-President George W Bush, he was unanimously confirmed for the circuit court in 2006 and that same year, he received a "unanimously well qualified" rating from the American Bar Association.

Kagan said the role involved an important function in grounding junior justices: "I think this is a way to kind of humble people".

"You have to spend an hour every month thinking about the chocolate-chip cookies". Kagan reportedly gained respect in the role when she used her position on the committee to lobby for a frozen yoghurt machine to be installed. He was Special Assistant to the Attorney General, U.S. Department of Justice from 1981-1982, Associate Counsel to President Ronald Reagan, White House Counsel's Office from 1982-1986, and Principal Deputy Solicitor General, U.S. Department of Justice from 1989-1993. Kennedy, through a court spokesperson, declined to comment on his plans. Thankfully, President Trump and a majority of the United States Senate recognized that fact, and Judge Neil Gorsuch is now known as Justice Neil Gorsuch.

Justice Byron White had a five-year rule, telling new justices that's how long adjusting takes. And the court would continue to do that, Roberts said. Luckily, you can pretty much just read a book most of the time, and I've got a little portable radio to keep me company when things are really dead.

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