Big Decisions to be Made as U.S. Supreme Court Begins new Term with Justice Neil Gorsuch

Oct 3, 2017

Front row, left to right: Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Associate Justice Anthony M. Kennedy, Chief Justice John G. Roberts, Jr., Associate Justice Clarence Thomas, Associate Justice Stephen G. Breyer. Back row: Associate Justice Elena Kagan, Associate Justice Samuel A. Alito, Jr., Associate Justice Sonia Sotomayor, Associate Justice Neil M. Gorsuch.
Credit supremecourt.gov

A Syracuse University Law Professor says President Trump’s appointment of new Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch should not be significant in the Justice’s decisions moving into his official first term. Professor William Banks thinks that Gorsuch’s values will be much more impactful.

 “I think Mr. Gorsuch is going to prove himself to be one of the most, if not the most conservative Justice on the court. Probably more conservative than Justice Scalia, or at least as conservative.”

Professor Banks adds that while the Supreme Court will face multiple important decisions down the line, a few already stick out to him.

 “One that will decide the availability of remedies for big time political gerrymandering in legislative districts. Another one that will decide the rights of business owners to decline the rights of gay or lesbian customers.”

Banks feels even stronger about one particular topic than impacts most Americans, smartphones. This decision will decide if police are allowed to monitor the location of cell phone users through site location data, a decision Banks thinks could have a strong impact on recent law history. 

Syracuse Law Professor William C. Banks
Credit law.syr.edu

 “The Fourth Amendment case on cellphone site location - if it comes out in favor of those whose location was given up - is a change in Fourth Amendment doctrine that will turn about 50 years of law on its head.”

With the new-look Supreme Court beginning its next term today, monumental decisions are looming for Gorsuch and his peers.  This will be his first full term as a Justice, having sat in on only a handful of cases before the summer.