‘A Neutral And Impartial Arbiter Who Favors No Litigant Or Policy’

Sen. Schumer Praised Judges Who Place ‘Rule Of Law Above Everything Else,’ ‘Even When Doing So Results In Rulings That Go Against So-Called Sympathetic Litigants’


JUDGE BRETT KAVANAUGH: “My judicial philosophy is straightforward. A judge must be independent and must interpret the law, not make the law.” (U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee Hearing 9/04/2018)

  • JUDGE KAVANAUGH: “A good judge must be an umpire—a neutral and impartial arbiter who favors no litigant or policy. As Justice Kennedy explained in Texas versus Johnson, one of his greatest opinions, judges do not make decisions to reach a preferred result. Judges make decisions because ‘the law and the Constitution, as we see them, compel the result.’” (U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee Hearing 9/04/2018)
  • JUDGE KAVANAUGH: “Over the past 12 years, I have ruled sometimes for the prosecution and sometimes for criminal defendants, sometimes for workers and sometimes for businesses, sometimes for environmentalists and sometimes for coal miners. In each case, I have followed the law. I don’t decide cases based on personal or policy preferences. I am not a pro-plaintiff or pro-defendant judge. I am not a pro-prosecution or pro-defense judge. I am a pro-law judge.” (U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee Hearing 9/04/2018)


Former Bill Clinton Lawyer: Lawyers ‘Know That Brett [Kavanaugh] Is A ‘Judge’s Judge,’ Someone Doing His Absolute Best To Follow The Law Rather Than His Policy Preferences’

And ‘Even When Brett Rules Against Parties, They Know He Gave Them A Fair Hearing’

ROBERT S. BENNETT, Former Bill Clinton Lawyer: “As a Washington attorney, I can attest to the high esteem in which the bar holds Brett. Lawyers love arguing before him because they know he will approach every case with an open mind. To him, it does not matter whether you are bringing a ‘conservative’ case or a ‘liberal’ case; what matters is whether you can support your case with solid arguments grounded in the law. That leads him to be an unusually balanced questioner, one who will rigorously test the case brought by each side rather than concentrating his fire on only one advocate. On the bench, Brett is not trying to score points so much as tally them.” (Robert S. Bennett, Letter to Sens. Grassley and Feinstein, 8/28/2018)

  • BENNETT: “Unsurprisingly, his even-handedness during oral argument translates into a steady stream of balanced and thoughtful opinions. Brett is widely respected by liberals and conservatives alike as independent, smart, experienced, and nuanced. When he writes an opinion, people pay attention. They know that Brett is a ‘judge’s judge,’ someone doing his absolute best to follow the law rather than his policy preferences. And even when Brett rules against parties, they know he gave them a fair hearing and thoughtful explanation for his position.” (Robert S. Bennett, Letter to Sens. Grassley and Feinstein, 8/28/2018)


Sen. Chuck Schumer Once Praised Then-Judge Sonia Sotomayor For Hewing ‘Carefully To The Text Of Statutes, Even When Doing So Results In Rulings That Go Against So-Called Sympathetic Litigants’

SEN. CHUCK SCHUMER (D-NY): “…Judge Sotomayor puts rule of law above everything else… Sotomayor has hewed carefully to the text of statutes, even when doing so results in rulings that go against so-called sympathetic litigants.” (U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee Hearing, p, 25, 7/13-16/2009)


NOW-CHIEF JUSTICE ROBERTS: ‘The Oath That A Judge Takes Is Not That I Will Look Out For Particular Interests … The Oath Is To Uphold The Constitution And Laws Of The United States’

NOW CHIEF JUSTICE JUDGE JOHN ROBERTS: “I had someone ask me in this process – I don’t remember who it was, but somebody asked me, you know, ‘Are you going to be on the side of the little guy?’ And you obviously want to give an immediate answer, but as you reflect on it, if the Constitution says that the little guy should win, the little guy is going to win in court before me. But if the Constitution says that the big guy should win, well, then, the big guy is going to win, because my obligation is to the Constitution. That’s the oath. The oath that a judge takes is not that I will look out for particular interests, I’ll be on the side of particular interests. The oath is to uphold the Constitution and laws of the United States, and that’s I would do.” (U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee Hearing, p.448, 9/12-15/2005)

NOAH FELDMAN, Liberal Harvard Law Professor: “…the thing is, siding with workers against employers isn’t a jurisprudential position. It’s a political stance. And justices -- including progressive justices -- shouldn’t decide cases based on who the parties are. They should decide cases based on their beliefs about how the law should be interpreted.” (Noah Feldman, Op-Ed, “Democrats' Misguided Argument Against Gorsuch,” Bloomberg, 3/15/17)


Related Issues: Judicial Nominations, Supreme Court, Senate Democrats, Nominations