Hot off Friday’s confirmation vote, Judge Neil Gorsuch was sworn in as a U.S. Supreme Court justice on Monday.
Gorsuch, who has had the unwavering support of gun owners and the National Rifle Association since his nomination was announced, fills the seat once held by the late, great Justice Antonin Scalia.
Gorsuch, accompanied by his wife and two daughters, was administered the oath by Chief Justice John Roberts in a private ceremony in the Supreme Court Justice’s Conference Room. In a public ceremony held later at the White House, Justice Anthony Kennedy administered the Judicial Oath.
Based on his past, Gorsuch is seen as a jurist in the mold of Scalia, a constitutional originalist who strongly supports the view that the Second Amendment protects an individual right to keep and bear arms. When questioned extensively about his views on the critical Heller case, Gorsuch never wavered.
“Whatever is in Heller is the law, and I follow the law,” he told Sen. Diane Feinstein, D-Calif., during the Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on his nomination. “It’s not a matter of agreeing or disagreeing, Senator, respectfully. It’s a matter of it being the law, and my job is to apply and enforce the law.” “I have no doubt you will rise to the occasion, and the decisions you make will protect our Constitution today and for many generations of Americans to come.” — President Donald Trump
Calling Gorsuch a man of “unmatched qualification” who is “deeply devoted” to the Constitution, President Donald Trump sees a bright future for freedom with Gorsuch on the high court.
“We are here to celebrate history,” Trump said at the White House ceremony. “I have no doubt you will rise to the occasion, and the decisions you make will protect our Constitution today and for many generations of Americans to come.”
The presumed nomination of a Supreme Court justice that would respect the Constitution as the law of the land was one main reason many NRA members and gun owners supported Trump over gun-ban candidate Hillary Clinton in last November’s presidential election. Those efforts have already borne fruit in the nomination, confirmation and swearing in of Justice Gorsuch.
“The NRA would like to thank President Trump for fulfilling his campaign promise to place a pro-Second Amendment justice on the Supreme Court,” said NRA-ILA Executive Director Chris W. Cox. “Nominating Gorsuch has again demonstrated President Trump’s unwavering support for our fundamental right to self-defense.”
Putting Gorsuch on the Supreme Court was not without its problems. Despite his outstanding qualifications, Senate Democrats declared war against his nomination, even attempting an unprecedented filibuster of the nomination when the confirmation vote came up on the Senate floor. Not to be deterred, however, Republicans, led by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Tenn., chose to use the so-called “nuclear option,” voting to let a simple majority decide the confirmation issue.
In the end, Gorsuch was confirmed to the court by a 54-45 vote. Monday’s swearing in of Justice Gorsuch was the end to a long, bumpy road to a freer future for all Americans.