Neil Gorsuch for the Supreme Court

The Scotsman

Well-Known Member
Apr 1, 2008
South of the Haggis Munching Line
Donald Trump has announced that Neil Gorsuch was his choice to replace Antonin Scalia, the conservative Supreme Court justice who died about a year ago, I guess this brings up the topic of Roe once again;
Mr Trump, who declared himself in 1999 to be “very pro-choice”, made his new pro-life stance an important part of his campaign. He has repeatedly promised to appoint pro-life justices to the Supreme Court, saying this could mean the overturning of Roe, and that he will sign anti-abortion measures approved by Congress, now entirely in Republican hands.

With recent Executive Orders and policy statements its' becoming rapidly apparent that Mr. Trump is attempting to make true his campaign promises. If Mr. Trump is actually trying to make good on this promise and Mr. Gorsuch is appointed to the Supreme Court will it make a difference? Or is it political window dressing to placate his voters? If not and he is "committed" to an overturn of Roe what effect would Gorsuch have within the Supreme Court - what will be the balance of opinion?
At present, the Supreme Court has five justices who would vote to uphold Roe — Justices Ruth Bader Ginsberg, Elena Kagan, Sonia Sotomayor, Anthony Kennedy, and Stephen Breyer. Gorsuch would be replacing Scalia, a staunch conservative, and would not change the 5-4 majority of votes in support of maintaining the precedent set by Roe. That number would change only if Trump gets to appoint a second Supreme Court justice.

So, the appointment of Mr. Gorsuch now is unlikely to alter the existing balance, however, there is the long-term view to consider. Justices are replaced upon either death or retirement so what of the rest of his term (possibly a second) in office and assuming there is no shift in the balance of Congress or the Senate?
It is likely that he will have the opportunity to do this in the next four years given that three of the court’s sitting justices are over the age of 78. But then a case would be needed to overturn Roe. And the Supreme Court tends to avoid going against its past decisions unless there is a powerful reason for doing so.

Is it feasible and politically prudent for Mr. Trump to go all out and try and "influence" the future of the Roe debate through similar appointments if they present themselves? Looking at the population's view opinions suggest that Roe should not be overturned;
Despite a growing partisan divide over the issue, nearly 70% of Americans back Roe, up from 60% in 1992, according to Pew Research Center.

What is his direction of travel?
Mr Pence is not the only ardent pro-lifer Mr Trump has picked for his cabinet. Tom Price, his choice to lead the department of health, has supported a nationwide ban on abortion after 20 weeks of pregnancy. His attorney-general nominee, Jeff Sessions, has called Roe “one of the worst, colossally erroneous Supreme Court decisions of all time”

in his response to Mr. Gorsuch's nomination, Democratic Senator Patrick Leahy said that nominating Gorsuch was Trump “making good” on the promise to appoint a judge who would overturn Roe v. Wade.
Personally, I think its all unlikely and that Roe will stand.
He's just a fairly equal replacement so it changes nothing. The next three are another story.
Wouldn't sTay up nights over reversing RvW.