Following Anthony Kennedy’s exit,U.S President Donald Trump has named Washington, D.C. federal judge Brett Kavanaugh to fill a vacancy on the U.S. Supreme Court.
Kavanaugh, 53, currently serves as a judge on the powerful US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. Here’s where he stands on some hot-button issues:
The President described Kavanaugh as ‘one of the sharpest legal minds of our time’ and urged the Senate to confirm his pick quickly. This incredibly qualified nominee deserves a swift confirmation and robust bipartisan support.
He said, Judge Kavanaugh has impeccable credentials, unsurpassed qualifications and a proven commitment to equal justice under the law. There is no one in America more qualified for this position, and no one more deserving,’ Trump said in his announcement.
In 2011, Kavanaugh dissented from a majority opinion of the DC Circuit that upheld a ban that applied to semiautomatic rifles in the District of Columbia.
In his dissent, he wrote that the Supreme Court had previously “held that handguns — the vast majority of which today are semi-automatic — are constitutionally protected because they have not traditionally been banned and are in common use by law-abiding citizens.”
The announcement was a family affair. Kavanaugh was joined by his wife Ashley, and daughters Margaret and Liza. His parents were at the White House, seated in the audience next to first lady Melania Trump.
Mr. President, I am grateful to you, and I’m humbled by your confidence in me. Justice Kennedy devoted his career to securing liberty. I am deeply honored to be nominated to fill his seat on the Supreme Court’ Kavanaugh said.
In his dissent, Kavanaugh wrote the Supreme Court has held that “the government has permissible interests in favoring fetal life, protecting the best interests of a minor, and refraining from facilitating abortion.” He wrote that the high court has “held that the government may further those interests so long as it does not impose an undue burden on a woman seeking an abortion.” He said the majority opinion was “based on a constitutional principle as novel as it is wrong: a new right for unlawful immigrant minors in US government detention to obtain immediate abortion on demand.” He added, however, that “all parties to this case recognize Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey as precedents we must follow.”
In his remarks, Kavanaugh touted his strong record with women throughout his career, noting he’s hired a majority of female law clerks and that Elena Kagan, who is now on the Supreme Court, hired him to teach at Harvard.