Bench Memos

NRO’s home for judicial news and analysis.

The Chief


The Chief was a great lawyer, an excellent judge, and a good, decent man. Like his colleagues, and like all of his clerks, I admire him very much, and have great affection for him. He was light-hearted, witty, caring, and an excellent teacher. I hope that the political spin will not drown out what Americans should remember about the Chief: He was a dedicated public servant, committed to the rule of law and to the Court as an institution. He fundamentally transformed our conversations and thinking about the Constitution and the Court; he reminded us of important questions and principles that had, for a time, been neglected. He regarded himself as the bearer of a great trust, and of a heavy obligation of stewardship. He was faithful to that trust, and he fulfilled that obligation. God bless him.


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