This morning I will testify at the confirmation hearing on the nomination of the Hon. Neil Gorsuch to the United States Supreme Court.  The hearing will commence around 9 am at the hearing room of Hart 216. Ironically, it is the same room that I litigated much of the Porteous impeachment case before final arguments before the 100 Senators on the Senate floor.  Below is my written testimony.

The Committee has assembled an impressive array of witnesses to discuss Judge Gorsuch’s background and jurisprudence. I will focus my remarks on two specific areas. First, there has been a long debate over the proper standard or criteria for evaluating a nominee for the Supreme Court. Exploring many of these past criteria reveal an exceptionally strong nominee in Neil Gorsuch. Second, while many of Judge Gorsuch’s views are likely to overlap with those of Justice Scalia, the one area of likely divergence would be his approach to agency decisionmaking and the Chevron doctrine. I will address cases that are illustrative of Judge Gorsuch’s views on agency review, statutory interpretation, and more generally the Separation of Powers: Hwang v. Kansas State University, Elwell v. Oklahoma, ex rel. Board of Regents of the University of Oklahoma, 693 F.3d 1303, 1313 (10th Cir. 2012), De Niz Robles v. Lynch, Gutierrez-Brizuela v. Lynch, United States v. Nichols, and TransAm Trucking, Inc. v. Administrative Review Board. These cases reveal a powerful intellect and voice committed to core principles of constitutional law. Judge Gorsuch’s would bring valuable and needed contributions to both of these areas. We stand at a critical crossroad for the country with fundamental changes occurring in our constitutional system. There could not be a better time for the addition of a justice who has a deep understanding and fealty to the original design of our government. I believe that Judge Gorsuch is such a nominee.

The panel of expert witnesses will include Mr. Jeff Lamken (Partner, MoloLamken); Professor Lawrence Solum (Georgetown University); Professor Jonathan Turley (GW Law School); Ms. Karen Harned (Executive Director, National Federation of Independent Business Small Business Legal Center); Ms. Heather McGhee (President, Demos); Ms. Fatima Goss Grave (National Women’s Law Center); Pat Gallagher (Sierra Club); Ms. Eve Hill (Brown Goldstein Levy).

Here is my testimony: Testimony.Turley.Gorsuch.Senate Judiciary

I want to thank Thomas Huff and Seth Tate for some late night proofing of this testimony.


  1. “Ironically, it is the same room that I litigated much of the Porteous impeachment case before final arguments before the 100 Senators on the Senate floor.”

    A case you lost…..

  2. JT was etched as a coward in the record before this, but this adds to his long, quite lethal record.

    See JT doesn’t travel like a Trucker does, but if he tries to lessen his misery in first-class on a plane…. let’s hope justice is served… and soon.

  3. Wiretap to tap a telephone or telegraph wire in order to get information

    surveillance :  close watch kept over someone or something

    NOT the same thing.
    Hence your article and logic are fundamentally flawed.

    California John

  4. I think the panel discussions and testimony have far more value than questioning Gorsuch himself. With the Ginsberg Rule, he would not disclose how he would determine any cases, so what’s left to ask him about? Sports? No, that would show bias, too. The weather, then? No, that might show his opinion on Climate Change. Um, sea otters, then? Those are universally accepted as the cutest creatures in the world, perhaps alternating that distinction with sugar gliders. So we’d basically be reduced to oohing and ahhhing over cute animal videos.

  5. Senators on both sides kept asking for commitments but I think they overlook the fact that he may agree with some of them on both sides. They could spoil something because they cajole him into agreeing with them right now but then opponents could ask he be recused down the line due to prejudicial remarks. No?

    1. Exactly if he had answered they would have used that as a reason to vote against.

  6. I enjoyed your testimony today. But I thought the Senators throughout the 4 days have conducted a very up-tight, unimaginative, conventional wisdom discussion. These topics should have been explored:
    • How should lapses of Congressional due diligence be handled by the 3-branch system?
    • lapses of due diligence leading to govt. shutdown?
    • unwillingness to legislate policy on hot-buttion issues? (e.g., abortion, gerrymandering, campaign finance)
    • lapses of advice and consent role leading to unfilled federal offices

    • Did the Founders err in Article I by delegating Congress “powers” instead of “responsibilities”?

    • Do we need checks and balances on abdication of responsibility within a branch of govt.? Would you
    favor a “Due Diligence Amendment” filling in these missing checks and balances?

    • Under our Tripartate Federalist Government, how do the most hot-button controversies eventually get laid to rest? Have we designed a system that prevents civil war from re-occuring?

    • Did the Founders make it too hard to Amend the Constitution? Do you agree with the viewpoint of Th. Jefferson that Amendment should occur frequently, and each generation of Americans leave their unique imprimatur on the Constitution through Ratification of fresh amendments?

    1. The answer to government shutdown can be addressed in one sentence. Government never shuts down. that’s a scare tactic the politicians use. That incudes Medicare, social security, all military, all intelligence and law enforcement, all air traffic controllers, At most they lay off temporarily up to 30% and that tells you what percentage SHOULD be laid off permanently.

  7. Mr. Turley,

    I am a federal civilian and work for the Department of the Navy in Charleston SC. As of last year a NAVADMIN came out stating that SCI/SAP cleared people were now subject to a random CI Polygraphs. Then they started selecting people. Most of the people selected only have access to secret information and below. Some people, such as myself, only have access to unclassified information. From how I read the Code 10 Section 1564a they are breaking the law by forcing us to undergo these. You have no choice. If you refuse they suspend your clearance on the spot and send you home on leave with out pay. We ran this up our chain of command as high as we could go and no one would do anything about it. Now two of my colleagues have been suspended from their jobs for “inconclusive” polygraph results. One had access to secret info and they other was the network administrator for the unclassified wireless network. I see that you have had run ins with the Navy on this topic before so any help/advice you could give would greatly be appreciated.

    1. Level of clearance at any one time has nothing to do with the occasional vetting checks. For one it helps keep people out of that level who should not be their or in the military. I am from a unit where Secret was the lowest level even for the spoons and ash/trash detail. Even then we never talked to them other than thanks for not burning the eggs and never considered them as a part of the unit no matter how sloppily they wore a beret.

      1. Soooo how does that justify those people being polygraphed? I was in the AF for 6 years and the Intel folks I knew had to sign a form agreeing to it. They were military we are civilians and don’t fall under UCMJ. I’ve been with the DoD for 26 years and that’s the only time I’ve ever even heard of anyone being polygraphed. From what we read, Polys are supposed to be reserved for the SAP and SCI communities. How in can the Navy justify doing them to people who have no access at all to classified? And a “Just do it cause we said so” doesn’t hold water. Yer right though. I have a TS and have never used it. In 26 years I’ve worked on unclass networks alone. Why the DoD insists on over classifying people I will never know. That’s a huge amount of money to waste every year.

  8. I’m sure that he is such a good man that he will clear President Pence of any wrong doing also.

  9. “Jill
    1, March 23, 2017 at 12:14 pm


    Look up his connection with the Bush administration’s torture policy. You’ll see two things: 1. he supports torture and 2. he claims the executive may overrule the law in some instances, torture being one of those instances.

    Torture is against our law, no exceptions. Further to say the executive may ignore the law is very dangerous. This is why I do not believe he will uphold the rule of law. His actions and statements have shown the opposite.


    I’m a Trump supporter but now I do not support Neil Gorsuch for the SC because he supported GW Bush’s Torture policies.

    Dr. Steve Pieczenik was just on Alex Jones infowars show & explained it.

    I see Gorsuch no differently then the good German judges who surrendered their souls to the Nazis.

    1. I distinctly remember him saying numerous times over this comedy show, that “no man is above the law.” Someone asked if that included the President and he repeated, “No man is above the law.” So is your fear that congress would amend the law and he would enforce the law?

      1. Shannon,

        He probably said that on a comedy show because he hoped Clinton would have been installed by the deep state coup by now! 🙂

        When he was busy advising Bush about torture, he said the executive may ignore the law. That is the opposite of no man being above the law. That’s carte blanche for the president to commit any crime he or she wishes to commit.

        I don’t even find it far fetched that Congress might change the law regarding torture if it suits their paymasters for them to do it. Under Obama they passed a “law” allowing indefinite detention without trial for everyone, including American citizens. That’s not our Constitution. I figure these people are no better than the executive and they apparently have confused our Constitution with that of Saudi Arabia!

        1. He said that during the confirmation hearings. You are quite the comedy show though.

            1. Question to either one of you. What is your resource for the original claim or premise. Google didn’t have it. Nor any where else I ran a search pattern?


              1. Michael,

                Here’s a good place to start because it has the torture memos (that have been allowed out so far) and the words of the lawyers who defended it:


                You might also see Ron Wyden and Gorsuch’s interchange with Feinstein. In that interchange Gorsuch “forgot” about what was in the 2005 memos and what he had written about them.

                P.S. I do not like any of the people here but they do you give you Gorsuch’s own words to look at for yourself.

        2. Good points. The 1% will be well served by Gorsuch. The Deep State imperialists likewise. Why does JT support such a person for the Supreme Court? Personal ambition? Going along to get along w/powerful people? Similar beliefs as Gorsuch? Oh, you think so? Otherwise, why would he support him if he disagree with his “originalist” gobblydegook?

          1. personal ambition and status..

            JT has never been interested in the truth or justice… just read this blog….

    2. Olly,

      First, thank you for having a good will discussion with me. I know we were on different sides of supporting Trump and I truly appreciated how you asked me the question you did. Thanks!

      I will look up this interview on infowars. Thanks for telling me about it!

    3. Why are some so easily led to dismiss Gorsuch as an undesirable judge? Has he not been consistent in his view of the law? Has he not attempted to make legal decisions on the law rather than politics? Is it not premature to suggest what Gorsuch is likely to do as a member of the Supreme Court? In short, give this honorable man an opportunity to serve our nation with integrity, substance & common judicial sense.

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