Yale Law School professor Akhil Reed Amar, a self-described supporter of Hillary Clinton in 2016, published an op-ed in the New York Times on Monday evening defending President Donald Trump’s nomination of Judge Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court.
Amar, who presumably disagrees with Kavanuagh on matters of judicial philosophy, writes that based on his judicial credentials alone — the traditional criteria for selecting Supreme Court justices — Kavanaugh is the best choice Trump could have made.
In the op-ed, “A Liberal’s Case for Brett Kavanaugh,” Amar wrote:
In 2016, I strongly supported Hillary Clinton for president as well as President Barack Obama’s nominee for the Supreme Court, Judge Merrick Garland. But today, with the exception of the current justices and Judge Garland, it is hard to name anyone with judicial credentials as strong as those of Judge Kavanaugh. He sits on the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit (the most influential circuit court) and commands wide and deep respect among scholars, lawyers and jurists.
Judge Kavanaugh, who is 53, has already helped decide hundreds of cases concerning a broad range of difficult issues. Good appellate judges faithfully follow the Supreme Court; great ones influence and help steer it. Several of Judge Kavanaugh’s most important ideas and arguments — such as his powerful defense of presidential authority to oversee federal bureaucrats and his skepticism about newfangled attacks on the property rights of criminal defendants — have found their way into Supreme Court opinions.
Most judges are not scholars or even serious readers of scholarship. Judge Kavanaugh, by contrast, has taught courses at leading law schools and published notable law review articles. More important, he is an avid consumer of legal scholarship. He reads and learns. And he reads scholars from across the political spectrum.
Amar adds: “(Disclosure: I was one of Judge Kavanaugh’s professors when he was a student at Yale Law School.)”
Read the whole op-ed here.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. He is also the co-author of How Trump Won: The Inside Story of a Revolution, which is available from Regnery. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.