Neil Gorsuch is a great pick by President Trump to fill the seat of the late Justice Scalia. Like Justice Scalia, he is a strong originalist and textualist. He believes the role of a judge is to look backwards towards precedent and what the law says rather than reading with moral interpretation. This leaves the legislature to make the laws and shape social policy, which is an extremely important distinction. Gorsuch does not support legal activism. In a 2005 piece written for the National Review he said:
“American liberals have become addicted to the courtroom, relying on judges and lawyers rather than elected leaders and the ballot box, as the primary means of effecting their social agenda on everything from gay marriage to assisted suicide to the use of vouchers for private-school education. This overweening addiction to the courtroom as the place to debate social policy is bad for the country and bad for the judiciary”.
He is also strongly against the “Chevron” doctrine, which is the deference of the judiciary to a federal agency’s interpretation of statute. This is great news for those of us who are concerned about over reach in the Executive Branch.
He is strongly pro-life stating, “human life is fundamentally and inherently valuable, and that the intentional taking of human life by private persons is always wrong”. He was a part of the court ruling that determined Hobby Lobby was entitled to opt out of mandatory provision of abortion and contraceptive drugs and devices under Obamacare. He has had other strong opinions defending religious freedom.
In Gorsuch, we get a strong judge who will defend the constitution, read the law as it is written, and keep the powers of the government separate.