Our 114th Supreme Court Justice
On July 9, 2018, President Donald J. Trump nominated Judge Brett M. Kavanaugh to fill retiring Justice Anthony Kennedy’s seat on the United States Supreme Court. “There is no one in America more qualified for this position, and no one more deserving,” President Trump said during his announcement.
“The rule of law is our nation’s proud heritage. It is the cornerstone of our freedom. It is what guarantees equal justice,” the President added.
On Saturday, October 6, 2018, by a vote of 50-48, the U.S. Senate upheld that principle and confirmed Justice Kavanaugh to the High Court.
Throughout his exemplary career, Justice Kavanaugh has let the Constitution guide his decisions. His appointment comes after a selection process marked by a historic degree of transparency, including President Trump’s public disclosure of a list of 25 highly qualified potential nominees for the Supreme Court.
Brett Kavanaugh served for more than a decade as a Federal judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit—referred to as the “second highest court in the land”—building a first-rate judicial record and reputation.
Justice Kavanaugh builds consensus and decides cases based on the law, not personal policy preferences.
“The judge’s job is to interpret the law, not to make the law or make policy. So read the words of the statute as written,” he says. “Read the text of the Constitution as written, mindful of history and tradition. Don’t make up new constitutional rights that are not in the text of the Constitution. Don’t shy away from enforcing constitutional rights that are in the text of the Constitution.”
After graduating with honors from Yale College in 1987, Kavanaugh graduated from Yale Law School in 1990, where he was a Notes Editor on the Yale Law Journal. He clerked for Justice Kennedy of the Supreme Court, Ninth Circuit Judge Alex Kozinski, and Third Circuit Judge Walter Stapleton.
Alongside his long career of public service, Justice Kavanaugh is a youth basketball coach, a church volunteer, and a mentor in local schools. His mother, Maryland Circuit Court Judge Martha Kavanaugh, blazed a trail for women in the legal profession. He and his wife Ashley have two school-aged daughters.
During His Confirmation Process, Statements of Support for Judge Kavanaugh Poured In
A majority of the Nation’s Governors signed a letter calling on the Senate to “expeditiously” confirm Brett Kavanaugh: “We have no doubt Judge Kavanaugh will continue to set aside his personal preferences and make decisions based on the law.” Read the letter from 31 of America’s Governors here.
Justice Kavanaugh’s female law clerks spoke highly of the support and mentorship that he provided, stating unequivocally that he “has been one of the strongest advocates in the federal judiciary for women lawyers.” Read the letter from Judge Kavanaugh’s female law clerks here.
A majority of the Nation’s State Attorneys General urged the Senate to confirm Kavanaugh, describing him as “an outstanding jurist with a proven commitment to upholding the Constitution and the rule of law.” Read the letter from the Nation’s states Attorneys General here.
Yale students, alumni, and faculty signed a letter highlighting Judge Kavanaugh as “a faithful servant to his community” and praising him as “one of our nation’s most distinguished jurists.” Read the letter from the Yale community here.
More Statements of Support
- Letter from Justice Kavanaugh’s Former Law Clerks
- Letter from Fellow Alumni of Georgetown Prep
- Letter from Justice Kavanaugh’s Former Students at Harvard Law School
- Letter from Former Law Clerks to Associate Justice Anthony M. Kennedy
- Letter from Parents of “Coach K’s” Basketball Team
- Letter from Supreme Court Bar Members
- Letter from Yale Law School Class of 1990
- Letter from Legal Scholars
- Letter from Bush Administration Women
- Letter from Members of Harvard Law School Black Law Students Association (BLSA) Chapter
- Letter from Yale College Women