The man many liberals feared would be a nightmare appointment to the Supreme Court did well to quell the fears of Americans everywhere at his confirmation hearing. Despite the suspicion that comes with being a Donald Trump appointment, Gorsuch has proven to be a rare act of sanity for the Trump administration.
Throughout his hearing, the judge was asked to give his opinion on numerous issues, but declined to do so each time. The thesis of his performance seemed to be summed up in a singular quote: “I can’t get involved in politics.”
Gorsuch’s knowledge of the law is quite impressive, as he listed previous court cases with ease when pressed. He seems to view all political subjects through a legal lens, and he does not appear to be willing to compromise the integrity of the Supreme Court or the U.S. judicial system—a welcome relief in the wake of Trump’s firing 46 U.S. attorneys.
When asked if Trump had pushed for him to rule against Roe v. Wade, Gorsuch said that he “would have walked out the door” if such a conversation had taken place.
To be clear, Gorsuch will not be a proponent of judicial activism, a role he correctly asserts that liberals have historically expected from justices. But that shouldn’t matter much. The Supreme Court shies away from ruling on issues that it feels are still up for debate in the court of public opinion, which allows them to view everything with a purely constitutional lens.
Furthermore, Gorsuch is replacing Antonin Scalia, a man who interpreted the constitution very literally, and thus aligned many of his rulings with the conservative agenda. Therefore, the balance of the court will undoubtedly remain intact, perhaps moreso than it was before.
In a concerning sign of the times, Gorsuch’s statement that he is “not looking to take us back to quill pens and horse and buggy” feels like a breath of fresh air.