Neil Gorsuch is currently awaiting Senate approval to become the next justice on the United States Supreme Court.
Gorsuch is a current judge on the U.S. 10th Circuit Court of Appeals.
President Donald Trump appointed Gorsuch within the first five weeks of his presidency.
Mason Wenzel, an NDSU junior studying finance, former president of NDSU’s chapter of College Republicans and current state treasurer shared his thoughts about Gorsuch.
“I think Neil Gorsuch is a pretty good candidate,” Wenzel said. He said the nominee’s opinion on right of life issues and his political affiliation is justification for his reasoning.
Vice President of College Democrats William Fleck said Gorsuch’s background in education at Harvard makes him qualified to fill the position, however his view of the constitution is “troubling.”
Wenzel said having a constructionist, someone who interprets laws as a form of gaining political understanding and who is more moderate than the late Supreme Court justice Antonin Scalia was, is an important role to maintain within the court.
In regards to Gorsuch’s right of life opinions, Wenzel said there are questions that need to be brought up by the Senate, but he doesn’t see anything outstanding that’s pointing him to be a terrible guy.
In contrast, Fleck said he is apprehensive about social issues like LGBTQ+ rights and economic stability.
“As of now, the fact that there’s nothing obscene about him, to my knowledge, makes him a good candidate,” Wenzel said. He later added the bar with which we measure the people in our political system with has become rather low and we are now trying to find a person with the least amount of bad in them.
Along with being a constructionist, Gorsuch is also a conservative.
Former U.S. President Barack Obama nominated Judge Merrick Garland to take Scalia’s spot, though approval was stalled in the Senate last year.
Wenzel said issues exist in re-examining the case of Roe v. Wade and how laws and regulations over abortion shift within the next coming years.
Fleck said ultimately, because of the lack of democratic senators, much of the legislation that would have otherwise be stopped will go through.
“I’m curious to see where he goes with his views in comparison to the constitution.” Wenzel said. “I think he’s less conservative than Scalia was so I think in reality it will bring us to a political equilibrium … it will be an issue that’s out of the way.”