The 17th Chief Justice of the United States, John G. Roberts, Jr., full name John Glover Roberts, Jr., was born in Buffalo, New York, on January 27, 1955.
John Roberts Wiki
John (Jack) G. Roberts, Sr. and Rosemary Roberts (née Podrasky) welcomed their second child, Roberts, into the world in Buffalo, New York, in 1955. Early in the 1960s, Roberts, Sr., a Bethlehem Steel Corporation executive, was promoted to work at a new steel mill in Indiana. The family relocated there, settling in Long Beach, Indiana.
Roberts did well in school, which is characteristic of future justices of the US Supreme Court. He attended La Lumiere, a freshly opened Roman Catholic boarding school in La Porte, Indiana, for his senior year of high school. He was cocaptain of the football team and received the top grade in his class.
He continued his education at Harvard University, where he earned his history degree summa cum laude in 1976. Before earning a magna cum laude degree from Harvard Law School in 1979, he worked as managing editor of the Harvard Law Review.
After graduating from law school, Roberts worked as a judicial clerk for two years, first for Associate Justice William H. Rehnquist of the Supreme Court and then for Judge Henry J. Friendly of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. After that, Roberts served in the Republican president Ronald Reagan’s administration, first as attorney general and subsequently as White House counsel.
John Roberts Career
Roberts had a distinguished and prosperous career as an appellate lawyer in the Washington, D.C., law firm of Hogan & Hartson from 1986 to 1989 and from 1993 to 2003, during which he argued 39 cases before the Supreme Court and won in 25 of them. During the Republican President George H.W. Bush’s administration, he worked as the Department of Justice’s senior deputy solicitor general from 1989 until 1993.
Roberts also often provided commentary on ongoing Supreme Court decisions on National Public Radio (NPR). Roberts’s private practise lacked any overt party or ideological bent, in contrast to his public career as an attorney, which entailed exclusively work in Republican administrations. He did, however, temporarily support George W. Bush’s presidential campaign in his legal battles over Florida’s vote counting in 2000. (see Bush v. Gore).
In 1992, President George H.W. Bush proposed Roberts for appointment to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, but the Senate rejected his nomination. When Jim Jeffords of Vermont left the Republican Party to become an independent, the nomination of Roberts for a position on the same court was put on hold. This effectively gave the Democrats control of the Senate.
Before Roberts was eventually approved in May 2003, when Republicans retook control of the Senate after the 2002 elections, Bush reappointed Roberts for the same seat twice more. Republican senators expressed dissatisfaction with Democratic senators’ 11-year delay in acting on Roberts’ nominations during his confirmation hearings.
However, Democratic Senator Patrick Leahy of Vermont defended the Democratic-controlled Senate’s inaction in 1992 by claiming that it was consistent with the long-standing “Strom Thurmond rule” (named for the long-serving South Carolina senator). According to Leahy, this rule states that “the President, Republican or Democrat, does not get a nominee through after about July or so of a presidential election yea.”
Roberts was appointed to the Supreme Court by George W. Bush in July 2005 to take associate justice Sandra Day O’Connor’s place after she announced her retirement after two years of service as a federal judge. But William H. Rehnquist, the previous chief justice, passed away before Roberts could be approved by the Senate. After Roberts’ associate justice candidacy was withdrawn, Bush nominated him to succeed Rehnquist as chief justice in September (O’Connor was eventually succeeded by Samuel A. Alito, Jr.).
Roberts stressed the value of judicial restraint during his confirmation hearings and vowed to uphold the notion that judges should simply and impartially follow the law rather than make new laws (see also judicial activism). Judges act like umpires do. He said, “Umpires don’t set the rules; they only enforce them.
In keeping with his parallel to baseball, he said that, if confirmed, “I will remember that it’s my duty to call balls and strikes, and not to pitch or bat.” Senators from both parties commended him highly for his brilliance, qualifications, tenacity, and professionalism. However, Democratic senators voiced doubts about his dedication to civil rights. In his testimony against Roberts’ confirmation, Democratic Rep. John Lewis of Georgia—who had once been a significant figure in the American civil rights movement—expressed his worry that Roberts would weaken or even reverse the advancements gained by the movement.
Other Democrats mentioned memos that Roberts had written while serving in the Reagan administration. These memos included contemptuous remarks regarding discrimination against minorities and women as well as about legal actions taken to address it. Roberts and his supporters said that he had just been doing what lawyers are expected to do: articulating the opinions of his clients, Republican governments. Roberts declined to respond to inquiries on particular topics, citing the potential that they would be brought before the Court as legal matters, in keeping with the custom among candidates to the highest court currently in existence. On September 29, 2005, Roberts was approved by the Senate by a vote of 78 to 22.
The Supreme Court has been refocused by John G. Roberts, Jr. to a time of judicial restraint and respect to the established power structure in American politics. On January 27, 1955, Roberts was born in Buffalo, New York. Prior to relocating to Indiana with his family in 1959, he temporarily resided in New York.
Roberts attended the neighbourhood primary school before enrolling in La Lumiere, a boarding high school in La Porte, Indiana. He did well in school and sought out music and theatre as more artistic outlets.
Early in his childhood, he shown excellent leadership qualities, which were demonstrated by his position as team captain in football, despite the fact that he was just a fair player. Roberts attended Harvard University as a result of his diligence and passion for learning. Roberts devotedly pursued his goal of becoming a history professor as a student at this institution, where he finished with honours in three years.
Roberts didn’t discover his affinity for law until he enrolled at Harvard Law. Roberts rose through the ranks there to become the Harvard Law Review’s managing editor.
Roberts received a magna cum laude from law school in 1979. Roberts served as a law clerk for Judge Henry Friendly for a year after graduating before beginning work as a law clerk for Justice William Rehnquist in 1980. This clerkship raised his status among Washington, D.C.’s elite. Roberts began working as an assistant to US Attorney General William French Smith two years later.
The White House attorney Fred Fielding, who worked during the Reagan administration, hired Roberts as an assistant. George H.W. Bush appointed Roberts to the position of Principal Deputy Solicitor General after he spent two years working in the private sector as an associate at Hogan & Hartson. Roberts returned to Hogan & Hartson in 1993 after serving in this position for three years. Roberts didn’t leave Hogan & Hartson until a new Bush assumed office.
Roberts was a 2003 U.S. Court of Appeals judge nominee by President George W. Bush. When Sandra Day O’Connor declared her intention to retire in 2005, Bush first proposed Roberts to take her place. However, once Chief Justice Rehnquist passed away, Bush withdrew his candidacy and proposed Roberts as Chief Justice of the United States Supreme Court.
The Senate reacted favourably to his pleasant Midwestern attitude during his confirmation hearings and his pledge to refocus the court into a restricted function of translator, not maker, of laws. As the youngest Chief Justice in a century, Roberts’ nomination was approved by the Senate. Roberts maintained his reputation as a political realist while sitting on the bench, which he acquired while serving in the executive branch under Republican leadership.
Unknown Facts & Trivia
- In Long Beach, Indiana, he was raised.
- He argued 39 matters before the US Supreme Court and won in 25 of them while working for the government and in private practise.
- He has memberships in the American Law Institute, the American Academy of Appellate Lawyers, and the Smithsonian Institution’s chancellorship.
- Since John Marshall in 1801, Roberts is the chief justice who is the youngest.