President Donald Trump has selected Neil Gorsuch, CC ’88, as his nomination to fill Justice Antonin Scalia’s seat on the Supreme Court.
With impending challenges to the constitutionality of measures recently enacted by Trump, including his immigration ban and actions against cities that provide sanctuary to undocumented students, Gorsuch’s rulings will affect the futures of students across the nation, including many at Columbia.
Gorsuch graduated from Columbia in 1988, where he was a columnist for Spectator and a founder of the satirical newspaper the Federalist.
From the Columbia Daily Spectator Archives
After graduating from Columbia, Gorsuch went on to Harvard Law School and earned his Doctor of Philosophy at Oxford University. He has served on the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals in Colorado since 2006.
In his columns for Spectator, Gorsuch criticized demonstrations by undergraduates at the time as ineffective, and later called campus protests “superficial.” He also ran for a University Senate seat on a platform of increased administrative transparency and more explicit Rules of Conduct, but was disqualified for breaking campaign rules regarding postering.
Gorsuch has expressed views in favor of limiting federal regulations and has advocated for broad definitions of religious freedom, supporting the Supreme Court’s decision in the 2014 Hobby Lobby case, which stated that the contraceptive mandate in the Affordable Care Act violated religious beliefs.