The GOP effectively obstructed President Barack Obama’s U.S. Supreme Court nominee Merrick Garland, even though he was exceptionally qualified and broadly praised by Republicans and Democrats alike for his federal work.
By nominating Garland, Obama magnanimously set aside political differences to provide the court a highly qualified, fair, and universally distinguished justice. In contrast, Donald Trump has nominated Neil Gorsuch to the U.S. Supreme Court — a choice clearly designed to alienate and undermine the confidence of American progressives.
Who is Neil Gorsuch?
By nominating Gorsuch, Trump and his allies have launched an attack against women’s reproductive rights, as well as our most revered American rights and traditions. His positions fall to the right of late justice Antonin Scalia.
Last September Gorsuch joined a dissent regarding the Hobby Lobby case, arguing that requirements for contraception coverage in the Affordable Care Act (ACA) run over the rights of religious non-profits. Gorsuch also joined a dissenting opinion challenging the ACA’s contraceptive mandate in Little Sisters of the Poor v. Burwell. The dissent called the mandate a “burden” to the plaintiffs’ free exercise of religion.
In a 1996 amicus brief in a case about physician-assisted suicide, Gorsuch wrote that requiring public hospitals to provide abortions was an instance of “the courts [feeling] free to override the conscience of health care providers.” In other words, Gorsuch believes that physicians, corporations, and individuals should be able to discriminate against women by stopping them from accessing necessary health care, based on their own personal religious beliefs.
When Utah became the fifth state to vote to defund Planned Parenthood, Gorsuch sided with this attempt. Planned Parenthood first challenged the law in Planned Parenthood v. Gary Herbert, and a federal judge sided with the state in December. Planned Parenthood then appealed that decision, and the 10th Circuit Court sided with Planned Parenthood.
Although Gorsuch has yet to directly rule on Roe v. Wade, the National Right to Life group has pledged to back him. The conservative group Judicial Crisis Network has bought him $10 million in advertising.
What Can You Do?
Trump’s judicial choice is unacceptable. Call your senator IF he or she sits on the Senate Judiciary Committee (SJC) and demand they vote “NO” on nominating Gorsuch for the U.S. Supreme Court. For your reference, here is a list of the senators on the SJC:
For more information, check out this article from Politico: “Gorsuch Picks Affirms Trump Vow to Pick ‘Pro-life’ Justice.”
As a co-founder of Together We Will (TWW) Azadeh Ghafari believes in leveling the political playing field for forward-thinking candidates. She seeks to build a powerful movement dedicated to electing progressives into office. She currently leads TWW Political Strategy Advisory Board. Azadeh earned a dual bachelor’s degree in history and political science and a minor in economics from UCLA. She went on to earn her dual master’s degree in public policy and social work from USC. Her areas of interest are based around policy analysis within higher education. She is pursuing a Ph.D in the field of education. She currently works as a nonprofit development director and political fundraising consultant.