Potential Trump Administration Supreme Court Picks-Thomas Hardiman


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Thomas Hardiman is presently seated on the United States Court of Appeals for the Third District and joined the court in 2007 after his nomination by President George W. Bush. He is well known and liked among conservative groups and is a likely bet for taking a seat on the Supreme Court.

Hardiman graduated from the University of Notre Dame with a bachelor’s degree in 1987 and then received his J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center in 1990. He worked in private practice attorney in Washington D.C. from 1997 to 1992 and then went on to practice in the State of Pennsylvania until 2003.

One of Hardiman’s more notable cases was in 2014 regarding whether or not non-fiction books about known affairs were defamatory or not. He was part of a three-judge panel of the Third Circuit that ruled that the book would indeed not be defamatory even though it addressed a married woman’s affair with her boss. In the underlying case, Penguin Group published a book called “The Murder Room: The Heirs of Sherlock Holmes Gather to Solve the World’s Most Perplexing Cold Cases”. The book told of a Philadelphia-based forensic group in which one of the founding member’s assistants was labeled as the boss’s girlfriend.

Another of Hardiman’s notable cases includes the 2009 case regarding sports betting in Delaware. He wrote the court’s opinion in a case about whether the state had legal standing to expand sports betting and Hardiman was one of a three-judge panel that ruled the State of Delaware could offer sports betting on multiple games but ruled that betting on individual games was illegal under federal law.



Potential Trump Administration Supreme Court Picks-Neil Gorsuch


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Neil Gorsuch is a federal judge on the US Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit. He joined the court in 2006 after being nominated by President George W. Bush and is most noted for being the lead judge in a 2009 case over Yellowstone National Parks’ snowmobile traffic. He earned his bachelor’s from Columbia University in 1988 and his J.D. from Harvard Law School in 1991 and then his D.Phil. From the University of Oxford in 2004.

After graduating from Harvard Law, Gorsuch was a law clerk on the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. He clerked for Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy before going to private practice in 1995. He worked in private law until 2005 before becoming principal deputy, associate attorney general for the US Department of Justice. Gorsuch was nominated by President Bush in May of 2006 to the Court of Appeals for a seat vacated by David Ebel. The American Bar Association rated him well qualified and he was confirmed by the Senate and received his commission later in the year.

Gorsuch’s name is frequently mentioned as a potential Supreme Court nominee and is considered to be one of the “safest choices” that the Trump administration might put forth because he is considered to be more “moderate” than other candidates on DOnald J. Trump’s list.

Gorsuch wrote The Future of Assisted Suicide and Euthanasia and was published by Princeton University Press in 2006. He is also the co-author of The Law of Judicial Precedent.



Potential Trump Administration Supreme Court Picks-Allison Eid


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Allison Eid is a justice on the Colorado Supreme Court who is known for her strong support of the Second Amendment as well as her wish to overturn the Roe v. Wade ruling on abortions. She was appointed to the court by Republican Governor Bill Owens in February of 2006 to succeed Justice Kourlis who had retired. She was retained by voters in 2008 and Eid’s current term expires in January of 2019.

Eid received her bachelor’s degree in American studies with distinction from Stanford University in 1987 and went on to receive her J.D. with high honors from the University of Chicago Law School in 1991. After graduating from Stanford, Eid worked as a special assistant and speechwriter to the Secretary of Education William Bennett. She served as a law clerk after law school for Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas and Judge Jerry Smith of the US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. She entered private practice afterwards and was also an associate professor for the University of Colorado Law School. She also served as the solicitor general in 2006 before being appointed to the Colorado Supreme Court.

When Eid was listed as one of the possible nominees for the US Supreme Court, Colorado Peak Politics praised Eid saying she “has consistently stood up for school choice reform, small government and tax payers against fellow justices who are known for their political activism. That kind of experience builds character and a strong backbone – qualities that Scalia had an abundance of and would be great to see in his replacement.”

Eid is considered more conservative than average in the state of Colorado while some of her writings suggest that she takes a more moderate approach than her former boss Justice Thomas. Eid has largely embraced a conservative vision of states’ rights but she hints that she would not go as far as Thomas referring to the theory of Thomas’ regarding the constitutional language of child labor laws. Even if Eid did not repeat “mistakes of the past”, her record includes no shortage of evidence that she would make conservatives very happy.



Potential Trump Administration Supreme Court Picks-Charles Canady


Florida Supreme Court Chief Justice Charles T. Canady speaks during the Pro Bono Service Awards ceremony Thursday, Jan. 27, 2011 in Tallahassee, Fla.

Charles Canady is a justice on the Florida Supreme Court who was appointed to the court in August of 2008 by Governor Charlie Crist, who was a Republican at the time, though has since become a Democrat. Canady was retained by voters on November 2, 2010 for a term that ends in January of 2017 – exceptional timing. Canady is known for his conservative views on abortion and civil rights and was voted by his peers to serve as chief justice in July 2010. He succeeded Peggy Quince whose term had expired and served in the position until 2012. Justice Canady filed to stand for retention in 2016 and was retained.

Canady earned his undergraduate degree from Haverford College in 1976 and his J.D. from Yale Law School in 1979 and then went on to practice at the firm of Holland and Knight until 1982. He spent another 10 years in private pracice while also serving in the House of Representatives from 1984 to 1990 and again from 1993 to 2001 before becoming general counsel to Governor Jeb Bush until 2002 before becoming a judge for the Florida Second District Court of Appeals. In 2008 he became a justice for the Florida Supreme Court.

Canady is a member of the Boy Scout’s of America Advisory Council as well as the Community Council for Substance Abuse. He is a member of the Home for Unwed Mothers Board of Directors, the United Cerebral Palsy Board and Volunteers in Service to the Elderly Board of Directors.

Canady is considered to be more conservative than average. He voted yes on banning partial-birth abortions and on barring transporting minors to get an abortion. Canady also voted to ban gay adoptions and yes to ending preferential treatment by race in college admissions. He voted yes on decreasing the gun waiting period from three days to one.



Potential Trump Administration Supreme Court Picks-Keith Blackwell


Justice Keith R. Blackwell.  Photo by John Disney/Daily Report.

Keith Blackwell is an associate justice on the Georgia Supreme Court who is best known for his help challenging the Affordable Care Act as deputy special attorney general for Georgia. Blackwell was appointed by Republican Governor Nathan Deal in June of 2012 to succeed Justice George H. Carley. He was elected to a full term in 2014 after running unopposed and his current term expires in December of 2020.

Blackwell received his bachelors in political science from the University of Georgia in 1996 before moving on to earn his J.D. from the same university’s school of law in 1999. He served on the intermediate appellate court from his appointment by former Governor Perdue in 2010 until joining the Supreme Court in 2012. Before joining the court of appeals, Blackwell worked in private law and was also an associate partner at a private firm. Blackwell served as assistant district attorney for Cobb County before entering the private firm and served as law clerk for Judge Edmondson on the court of appeals from 1999 to 2000.

Blackwell considers himself a conservative judge, but has also stated “I think it’s actually very unfortunate that people tend to view the decisions through the lens of partisan affiliations and who the party of the appointing president or governor was. I can tell you uniformly on our court that I am confident that there is not one of the 12 judges who would look at a case and ask how would the Democrats like this case to come out or how would the Republicans like this case to come out in deciding the case.”

Blackwell has a lengthy list of associations including adviser to the Business Courts Committee of the State Bar, Chair of the Committee on Court Rules on the Court of Appeals and he is a member of the Board of Advisers for the Atlanta Chapter of the Federalist Society for Law and Public Policy Studies where he previously served as the chapter’s president for three years and as a member of the executive board.