Leonard Leo, a top Federalist Society official who advised President Donald Trump on his selection of Judge Neil Gorsuch as his first nominee to the Supreme Court, Wednesday described the 49-year-old federal judge as a person with a "deep sense of fairness."
"He will look at the law carefully, and that's the best safeguard for all Americans in terms of their freedom and opportunity in this country," Leo told MSNBC's "Morning Joe" about Gorsuch, who sits on the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver.
Gorsuch clerked in the past with both late Supreme Court Justice Byron White and with Justice Anthony Kennedy, and Leo said he believes Gorsuch got his sense of "working hard to find the right answer and trying to be impartial and fair" from the experience.
"You can disagree with some of their opinions, but at the end of the day that's what I think he got out of, particularly Justice White," said Leo.
He believes Gorsuch's opinions, though, to be closest to those of the late Justice Antonin Scalia, whose seat he'll fill if he is confirmed.
"What he is doing in many opinions is saying the best way to protect freedom and accountability is to look at the Constitution and to interpret the law as it's written and originally intended," said Leo.
"That's the legacy of Justice Scalia, and at the core of what Scalia's judicial life was all about."
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