udge Neil Gorsuch heads to Capitol Hill this week as President Trump’s nominee to be the next associate justice on the Supreme Court. He’ll testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee in three days of hearings.
Even before he walks into that hearing room, critics have assailed him. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) said last week, “Neil Gorsuch may act like a neutral, calm judge, but his record and his career clearly show he harbors a right-wing, pro-corporate, special-interest agenda.”
It is important to remember what is at stake and why NSSF supports his confirmation to the Supreme Court. Judge Gorsuch is slated to replace the late Justice Antonin Scalia, author of the 2008 Heller decision, upholding individual right to keep and bear arms under the Second Amendment. While Judge Gorsuch hasn’t had the opportunity to weigh cases surrounding the Second Amendment of this magnitude, some have pointed to his 3-0 decision on U.S. vs. Rodriguez, which involved Fourth Amendment search and seizure questions.
The Supreme Court is split 4-4 along ideological lines. Judge Gorsuch’s confirmation would sustain the court balance that existed prior to Justice Scalia’s death. More importantly, it would give the court a jurist with a record of sticking to a strict interpretation of the Constitution. This is what it means when he’s referred to as an originalist.