Stop Gorsuch for Supreme Court Justice Rally, Jan. 2017. Photo via Wikimedia Commons.

Environmental groups oppose the nomination of Judge Gorsuch to Supreme Court

Judge Gorsuch’s extreme and restrictive opinions too dangerous for our highest court.

This week, the U.S. Senate will take up the nomination of Judge Neil Gorsuch to serve on the U.S. Supreme Court. Today, the environmental community has banded together in solidarity against Judge Gorsuch’s nomination; each organization has made a careful case against the judge. Together, we represent the diversity and the solidarity of a movement opposed to his candidacy.

As Congress continues to consider the nomination of Judge Neil Gorsuch to the U.S. Supreme Court, numerous national environmental advocacy groups have banded together to voice their opposition.

As a nation, we cannot protect our shared environment without the help of engaged citizen groups, an even political playing field, and government officials who are able and willing to make decisions based on credible science. Throughout his career, Judge Gorsuch has demonstrated his opposition to these core values while undermining the right of citizens to access the federal courts to enforce environmental protection laws. Judge Gorsuch’s decisions demonstrate hostility toward well-established principles of environmental protection coupled with a bent toward judicial activism — a combination too dangerous for a lifetime seat at our highest court.

As leaders in the environmental community, Friends of the Earth U.S., Center for Biological Diversity, CREDO, Greenpeace U.S., Sierra Club and the League of Conservation Voters submitted their detailed objections to Judge Gorsuch to the U.S. Senate Committee on the Judiciary.

The groups have issued the following statements:

  • Friends of the Earth U.S.: “Judge Gorsuch opposed the right of citizens to access the federal courts to enforce environmental protection laws, and has attacked the foundations of environmental regulations established in the Friends of the Earth v. Laidlaw decision,” said Jon Fox, Senior Democracy Campaigner at Friends of the Earth. “In addition, Judge Gorsuch affords political donors a higher degree of legal protection than the Court currently affords an individuals’ right to vote. Sadly, Judge Gorsuch is not the appropriate nominee to ensure that all Americans, no matter the size of their wallets, share an equal voice in our political system.” Read the full statement.
  • Center for Biological Diversity: “Senate Democrats are right to filibuster Neil Gorsuch’s nomination to the Supreme Court. He’s the most dangerous nominee in our lifetime and must be rejected,” said Bill Snape, senior counsel at the Center for Biological Diversity, and professor at American University’s Washington College of Law. “Now Senate Republicans are trying to jam through a nominee who believes that corporations can do no wrong and our government can do no right. If Gorsuch is confirmed, he’s likely to damage and disrupt critical efforts to protect our air, water and climate from corporate pollution.” Read the full statement.
  • CREDO: “A vote to advance the nomination of Neil Gorsuch is a vote to hand the future of our planet to the fossil fuel industry,” said CREDO Deputy Political Director Josh Nelson. “Throughout his career Gorsuch has consistently sided with corporations over the interests of the American people,” he continued. “With scientists warning that time is running out to stop runaway climate change we can’t afford to put another rubber stamp for Big Oil on the Supreme Court.” Read the full statement.
  • Greenpeace U.S.: “The nomination of Neil Gorsuch is an effort by Republicans and the corporations they serve to erode the gains we have made for ourselves and our children to live safer, more equal, and free lives,” said Greenpeace U.S. Democracy Campaigner Rachel Butler. “His career affection for voter suppression, unrestricted campaign spending, and the erosion of environmental regulation sits him squarely in the Trump tent with the other corporate cronies out to detonate our institutions so big business can trample on the earth and leave our communities in the dust. Senators who serve the people should know that the people are with them in rejecting Neil Gorsuch.” Read the full statement.
  • Sierra Club: “Simply put, Judge Neil Gorsuch is unfit to be given a lifetime appointment to the Supreme Court. He failed to answer U.S. Senator’s questions and his judicial history paints a picture of a person who will put corporate polluters’ interests and profits above clean air, clean water, and a healthy environment” said Courtney Hight, Democracy Program Director at the Sierra Club. “The Sierra Club continues to oppose his nomination, and, if he is unable to get the 60 votes of support from Senators as is historically needed, then we need to change the nominee, not the rules.”​ Read the full statement.
  • League of Conservation Voters: “The League of Conservation Voters strongly opposes the nomination of Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court. His confirmation to the court will have extreme and devastating consequences for our clean air, clean water, public lands and a safe climate for future generations. The courts are the final arbiters of justice, ensuring that all people in this country are protected by our bedrock environmental safeguards as well as the civil rights that underpin our democracy,” said Senior Vice President of Government Affairs Tiernan Sittenfeld. “Unfortunately, Gorsuch seems likely to overturn precedent and well-established principles of law at the expense of so much we hold dear, and we call on the Senate to reject his nomination.” Read the full statement.
  • Earthjustice: “Earthjustice strongly opposes the confirmation of Judge Gorsuch to the Supreme Court. His record on the federal bench reveals a deep hostility to government and the critical role it plays in safeguarding public health, our environment and civil rights. He is also an opponent to public interest litigation, undermining the right of all people to have access to the courts. The Senate should require the 60-vote bar and reject his confirmation.” said Marty Hayden , Vice President of Policy and Legislation for Earthjustice. Read the letter.
Press Contact: Patrick Davis, (202) 222–0744,
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