Antonin Scalia, Associate Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court

Antonin ScaliaAntonin Gregory Scalia (born March 11, 1936) is an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States. He was appointed in 1986 by President Ronald Reagan having previously served on the D.C. Circuit and in the Nixon and Ford administrations, and teaching law at the Universities of Virginia and Chicago. He is considered to be a core member of the conservative wing of the court, vigorously advancing textualism in statutory interpretation and originalism in constitutional interpretation.

Scalia began his legal career at Jones, Day, Cockley and Reavis in Cleveland, Ohio, where he worked from 1961 to 1967, before becoming a Professor of Law at the University of Virginia in 1967. In 1971, he entered public service, working as the general counsel for the Office of Telecommunications Policy, under President Richard Nixon, where one of his principal assignments was to formulate federal policy for the growth of cable television. He also suggested policy which would give the White House more influence over the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, ranging from well-chosen appointees to the Board of Directors to giving more power to local stations instead of the national organization. From 1972 to 1974, he was the chairman of the Administrative Conference of the United States, before serving from 1974 to 1977 in the Ford administration as the Assistant Attorney General for the Office of Legal Counsel.

On July 15, 1982, President Ronald Reagan nominated Scalia to be a Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, to a seat vacated by Roger Robb. He was confirmed by the United States Senate on August 5, 1982, and received commission on August 17, 1982. Four years later, on June 24, 1986, Reagan nominated him to replace William Rehnquist as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States after Rehnquist had been nominated by Reagan to serve as Chief Justice of the United States. Scalia, whose nomination was backed by liberals such as Mario Cuomo, was approved by the Senate in a vote of 98-0 (with Barry Goldwater and Jake Garn absent), and he took his seat on September 26, 1986, becoming the first Italian-American Justice on the Supreme Court of the United States. It should be noted that there was very little controversy to his rise to Supreme Court Justice, partly attributed to the elevation of Rehnquist to Chief Justice, who received a lot more coverage.¹

Antonin Scalia Quotes

"Mere factual innocence is no reason not to carry out a death sentence properly reached."
"In a big family the first child is kind of like the first pancake. If it's not perfect, that's okay, there are a lot more coming along."

"There is nothing new in the realization that the Constitution sometimes insulates the criminality of a few in order to protect the privacy of us all."

"What is a moderate interpretation of the text? Halfway between what it really means and what you'd like it to mean?"

"If you think aficionados of a living Constitution want to bring you flexibility, think again. You think the death penalty is a good idea? Persuade your fellow citizens to adopt it. You want a right to abortion? Persuade your fellow citizens and enact it. That's flexibility."

"If you're going to be a good and faithful judge, you have to resign yourself to the fact that you're not always going to like the conclusions you reach. If you like them all the time, you're probably doing something wrong."

"Every time the Supreme Court defines another right in the Constitution it reduces the scope of democratic debate."

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