As the Congress and President Trump continue to work to pass the most significant tax cuts in more than 30 years, the President is also implementing another enormous conservative reform that will strengthen America for decades.
With the help of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, President Trump is restoring the intended purpose of the federal bench – to uphold the rule of law as outlined in the Constitution.
Our Founding Fathers intended for the judicial branch to be an impartial institution with the sole mission of interpreting the law and ensuring it is applied fairly to all Americans.
Under the previous administration, judges instead cast themselves as political activists pursuing a liberal-leaning agenda. Our Founders fully understood the threat that a politically saturated judiciary branch posed to our God-given and legally protected American freedoms.
Fortunately, President Trump does too.
With help from Advisor Leonard Leo, as well as guidance from John Malcolm and others at the Heritage Foundation and the Federalist Society, President Trump has already taken monumental steps to restore the integrity of the federal bench by appointing originalist judicial nominees who will apply the law as it is written, rather than how current political forces desire.
In addition to conservative U.S. Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch, 13 more of President Trump’s judicial nominees have been confirmed by the Senate as of last Thursday. In comparison, only eight Obama appointees had been confirmed by the end of November 2009 – when the Democrat caucus controlled the Senate with 60 seats.
The numbers alone speak to how tremendously effective President Trump and Leader McConnell have been. Republicans have a slim 53-vote Senate majority (including Vice President Pence’s vote). Imagine what they could get done with 60 reliable votes – a point to keep in mind going into the 2018 midterm elections.
The Left and the media are panicked because they know the large-scale changes President Trump is making will have long-lasting, history-shaping effects.
Federal judicial appointments are for life, and President Trump is selecting relatively young individuals (by federal court standards). This means these conservative judges could potentially occupy these positions for a long time. In fact, Washington Post columnist Ronald A. Klain wrote in July that the average age of President Trump’s Court of Appeals nominees was 48 – seven years younger than the average age of Obama’s nominees. This means, “on average, Trump’s appellate court nominees will sit through nearly two more presidential terms than Obama’s,” Klain wrote.
In addition to serving longer terms, these judges will also bring new experiences and aptitudes into the judicial system. This can be tremendously helpful as cases involving cybercrime, data theft, and malicious use of technology become more common.
The importance of this dramatic reshaping of the entire federal court system cannot be overstated. While it is easy to focus on the U.S. Supreme Court, lower and appellate court judges will make decisions that impact ordinary Americans on a daily basis for decades to come. This Trump transformation in the judiciary could establish the most pro-American, pro-individual rights federal bench in modern American history.
There is no doubt the tax cuts President Trump and Republicans in Congress are working on will do wonders to boost our economy, create jobs, and increase wages; and that the Trump deregulation effort will spur innovation and empower Americans to focus on the work they love.
However, the Trump revolution taking place in the federal court system will help our nation continue to prosper by ensuring that our judges protect our lives, liberty, and core values for decades to come.
Newt Gingrich is the author of "Understanding Trump" and is a former Speaker of the House.