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The Law Blogger is a law-related blog that informs and discusses current matters of legal interest to readers of The Oakland Press and to consumers of legal services in the community. We hope readers will  find it entertaining but also informative. The Law Blogger does not, however, impart legal advice, as only attorneys are licensed to provide legal counsel.
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Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Pair of Michigan Justices on Trump's SCOTUS Short List

Ever demure, Michigan Supreme Court Chief Justice, Robert Young, Jr., the highest elected African-American in our state government, stated he was unaware of his inclusion on a short-list for President-Elect Donald Trump's consideration to replace former Justice Antonin Scalia at the SCOTUS.

Justice Young, along with fellow Michigan Supreme Court Justice Joan Larsen, were included in Trump's May and September announcements regarding potential SCOTUS appointments. Both Michigan Justices are members of our High Court's conservative block.

Over the years, this blogger has had several occasions to interact with Justice Young. Most recently, when I argued a 4th Amendment search and seizure case at the Michigan Supreme Court last December, it was Justice Young that did most of the questioning. Back in 2008, I shared a panel with Justice Young on the topic of one of my felony-murder appeals that also made it to the Supreme Court.

As part of the Michigan High Court's conservative block, the justices are among those who take a textualist approach to both the Michigan and the United States Constitutions. This means that they decide cases in accord with the precise meaning of the text of the constitutions and the statutes impacting the case, rather than in accord with their own personally held political beliefs.

Deceased Justice Scalia was the textualist-in-chief; he deplored the judical activism which has been a hallmark of the liberal block on the SCOTUS. One of Trump's avowed first orders of business will be to fill the vacancy on the Court to restore the 5-4 majority that has held sway over most of the past decade.

In our opinion, Justice Young would be a well-qualified appointment; an appointment, however, that seems unlikely amid the clamor in the nation to appoint an ultra-conservative federal jurist to the SCOTUS.

Post #566

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