As many would refer to him as one of the most conservative and well-minded Supreme Court Justices of all time, Justice Antonin Scalia left us too soon.
When the news broke of Justice Scalia passing away, many started questioning who would take his seat; a seat he had held since 1986 when he was appointed by President Reagan. Many pressed the concern that President Obama should choose the next Supreme Court Justice, yet President Obama never received the privilege of doing so. Names got tossed around as to who should be appointed. Sri Srinivason, Patricia Ann Millett, Jane Kelly, and Paul Watford just to name a few of the suggestions.
Over the next few months after his passing, talk about who would replace him subsided minimally.
With Scalia being a man of great intelligence and pride, finding a successor to his seat would be a great task. Scalia, a firm driving force in the acceptance of Originalism on the Supreme Court of the United States had conservative notions like no other. He was innovative and respected, and that carried him a long way.
Scalia referred to the constitution as “not living but dead.”
For the left, their worst fear became a reality when Donald Trump was elected as the 45th President of the United States of America. Ultimately, they knew that this meant he would be choosing the next Supreme Court Justice to replace Scalia.
While President Trump kept his plans relatively quiet on who his nominee for Supreme Court Justice would be, the media shed light on three names of importance that had the greatest chance of being chose as nominee.
On January 31, 2017 at approximately 8PM, President Trump announced Neil Gorsuch as his choice for nominee to the Supreme Court of the United States. This in turn brought extreme amounts of joy to the millions who feared that Scalia’s successor would value different principles than Scalia. For others, they were rattled to the core and in turmoil over President Trump’s choice. The thought of having another conservative judge representing America on the Supreme Court made the left uneasy.
Gorsuch, a Harvard graduate, had served on the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals since 2006. Much like Scalia, Gorsuch has many conservative beliefs and values. He believes in having a country of laws and citizens that abide by them. He strives to make America a better place.
Gorsuch is a strong advocate for religious freedom rights. In September 2015, he stated that requirements for contraception coverage in Obamacare invaded rights of religious non-profits. For this reason, and many others, conservatives are standing alongside President Trump’s nominee. Gorsuch embodies so much of what Scalia represented. From standing up for equal rights, to treating people fairly and respectfully.
Not only will Judge Gorsuch continue to preserve and build on Scalia’s philosophies, he will enhance them and keep America under the same faith while doing so. Rather than reconstruct or refashion what Scalia established, Gorsuch will embark on a mission to maintain the principles that many Americans cherished. With what President Trump referred to as the next 50 years of Gorsuch leadership, we are sure to be reminded of Scalia’s legacy. A legacy of love, compassion, and obeying the law.
Kyle Morris attends the University of Alabama where he is majoring in Telecommunication and Film and minoring in Political Science. Follow him on twitter @RealKyleMorris