Stephen Reinhardt, who was called the “liberal lion” of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, passed away on March 29th in Los Angeles. During his almost 40 years on the appeals court bench, Reinhardt wrote opinions that struck down the constitutionality of the words “under God” in the Pledge of Allegiance and overturned Proposition 8, California’s initiative defining marriage as a male-female union.
Reinhardt’s death means that there are now seven vacancies on the notoriously liberal Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. President Trump has an historic opportunity to remake the Ninth Circuit—and the entire federal judiciary. The vast majority of his judicial nominees thus far have been stellar. They will adhere to the rule of law and interpret the Constitution based on the words in it, not the ideas they want to be in it.
The President should continue his good work in this arena. Doing so will remake federal jurisprudence for decades to come.Read More »
This is Michael Medved for Townhall.com, with a message to President Trump: congratulations, Mr. President, on your first year in office. In the upcoming State of the Union Address you should highlight our strong economy, progress against ISIS, cuts in taxes and regulation, judicial appointments and more. You should paraphrase Ronald Reagan by asking: are you better off than you were one year ago? An overwhelming majority will say yes, we are.
But please, Mr. President, don’t let Democrats change the focus from the state of the union to the state of your mind. Of course, your opponents have been nasty and unfair, but hitting back at them in similarly nasty terms only diminishes your stature. By emphasizing the undeniable progress of everyday Americans, you will build on your first year’s success. And you can overcome the highly personal attacks of your critics more effectively by ignoring them, rather than responding to them.
Some conservatives expressed dismay, and even a sense of betrayal, over the President’s recent press conference with Mitch McConnell, in which Trump praised the Senate Majority Leader for his loyalty and effectiveness. What did Trump have in mind, McConnell’s many right-wing critics seemed to wonder?
Very likely, he appreciated the Kentucky Senator’s stellar record on Judicial nominations. It’s not just that McConnell blocked Obama’s Supreme Court nominee, Merrick Garland, enabling the superb appointment of Neil Gorsuch. He also delayed scores of liberal lower court nominees, so that Trump took office with 107 key vacancies to fill—more than four of the last five presidents going back to Reagan.
Kimberley Strassel of the Wall Street Journal praised both McConnell and Trump for nearly 60 consistently conservative judicial appointments so far. She wrote: “McConnell just happens to have a steely passion for remaking the judiciary and deserves credit for the extraordinary class of judicial nominees now coming through.”