Who Are Our Supreme Court Justices?

Supreme Court Justices

Associate Justices (Ranked In Seniority):

 

John Roberts (Chief Justice)

(Nominated by President George W. Bush; seated on Sept. 29, 2005)

John Roberts was originally nominated to fill the spot of retiring Associate Justice Sandra Day O’Connor in 2005, but was re-nominated a few months later to the office of Chief Justice after the death of Chief Justice William Rehnquist. Prior to his nomination, Roberts served on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit from 2003-2005. He has been solidly conservative on social issues such as abortion, religious liberty, free speech, and marriage, but his opinions in two cases involving challenges to Obamacare rankled many conservatives.

Anthony M. Kennedy

(Nominated by Pres. Ronald W. Reagan; seated Feb. 18, 1988)

Justice Kennedy is widely regarded as the "swing vote" on the nine-member Court, and has been the 5th vote on many pivotal cases, including key (but disappointing) decisions on abortion, homosexuality, and same-sex marriage.

Clarence Thomas

(Nominated by Pres. George H. W. Bush; seated Oct. 23, 1991)

Appointed to the U.S. Supreme Court in 1991 by President George H.W. Bush, Justice Thomas is a steadfast defender of the U.S. Constitution, and has consistently opposed abortion and supported religious liberty, free speech, and one-man, one-woman marriage. And while he almost never asks questions during oral arguments, his written opinions are forceful and compelling.

Ruth Bader Ginsburg

(Nominated by Pres. Bill J. Clinton; seated Aug. 10, 1993)

A former ACLU lawyer, the reliably liberal Justice Ginsburg was appointed to the U.S. Supreme Court by President Clinton in 1993. She strongly supports abortion on demand and same-sex marriage, while opposing religious freedom rights in cases involving homosexuality or abortion.

Stephen G. Breyer

(Nominated by Pres. Bill J. Clinton; seated Aug. 3, 1994)

A former Harvard professor, Department of Justice lawyer and assistant special prosecutor in the Watergate scandal of the early 1970s, Justice Breyer has been a federal judge since 1980, and a Supreme Court Associate Justice since 1994, when he was appointed by President Clinton.

Breyer's judicial philosophy is quite liberal on most social issues. He has consistently voted in favor of abortion on demand, homosexuality and same-sex marriage.

Samuel A. Alito, Jr.

(Nominated by Pres. George W. Bush; seated on Jan. 31, 2006)

Also appointed by President George W. Bush, Justice Alito is a strong defender of religious freedom, freedom of speech, and one-man, one-woman marriage.

Sonia Sotomayor

(Nominated by Pres. Barack H. Obama; seated on Aug. 8, 2009)

Appointed to the U.S. Supreme Court by President Obama in 2009, Justice Sotomayor has been a federal judge since 1992. She consistently votes with the liberal wing of the Court, and votes consistently in favor of liberal causes such as abortion, same-sex marriage and against religious liberty where it clashes with the liberal agenda.

Elena Kagan

(Nominated by Pres. Barack H. Obama; seated on Aug. 9, 2009)

A former Harvard Law professor and dean, as well as the Solicitor General under President Obama, Kagan was appointed to the U.S. Supreme Court in 2010. She is part of the liberal wing of the Court and consistently votes with that wing on social issues.

Neil Gorsuch

(Nominated by President Donald Trump; seated on April 10, 2017)

Gorsuch served on the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals prior to his nomination to the Supreme Court. He is known for his highly readable style of opinion-writing, his Scalia-like adherence to an "originalist" judicial philosophy, and his strong defense of religious freedom.

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