July 19, 2005
For the first time since 1994, the nomination process for a new Supreme Court judge is moving forward. President Bush has named U.S. Court of Appeals Judge John Roberts Jr. as his nomination for Supreme Court.
"I have found such a person in Judge John Roberts," said President Bush.
President George W. Bush took his first supreme step tonight, nominating John G. Roberts Jr. to the Supreme Court. Roberts has garnered political support from both parties but is considered a rock solid conservative. For this reason, UVA Law Professor Lillian BeVier believes the confirmation process will still be difficult.
"I do believe the Democrats are very serious about not wanting a conservative justice on the Supreme Court," she said.
Currently, Roberts is a U.S. Court of Appeals judge in D.C. He was nominated and confirmed in 2003 after two prior nominations. What he lacks in judicial experience, he more than makes up for in Supreme Court appearances.
"In public service and private practice he has argued 39 cases before the Supreme Court and earned a reputation as one of the best legal minds of his generation," Bush said.
The 50-year-old Roberts is considered a moderate choice for President Bush, having never weighed in significantly on any hot button issues. He says that he is both thrilled and honored to be nominated.
"It is both an honor and very humbling to be nominated to serve on the Supreme Court," Roberts said.
In the end, Roberts will need a majority vote by the Senate before taking his place amongst the most heralded legal minds in the world.
Hearing before the judiciary committee is set to begin in late August or early September, with the goal of having the judge in place by the first Monday in October. According to reports, the President offered the job to Roberts just around noon today.