Who is Neil Gorsuch? Fast facts about President Donald Trump's Supreme Court nominee


President Donald Trump fulfilled yet another promise for his first 100 days in office on Tuesday night as he nominated federal judge Neil Gorsuch to replace Antonin Scalia on the Supreme Court.

Gorsuch is a relatively unknown outside of legal circles. Here are a few quick things to know about him.

1. He is the youngest nominee in decades

At 49, Gorsuch will be seven years younger than the next oldest colleague on the Supreme Court if confirmed and 34 years younger than Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Supreme Court Justices serve for life, which means Gorsuch could have a significant impact on U.S. law for decades to come.

2. He got his law degree from Harvard

Every current member of the Supreme Court attended either Yale or Harvard Law School -- although Ginsburg transferred from Harvard to Columbia Law and ultimately received her degree from there -- and Gorsuch continues this tradition.

Gorsuch also attended Columbia as an undergraduate and received a Ph.D. in philosophy from England's Oxford University, where he was a member of the prestigious Marshall Scholar program.

3. He went to school with Obama

Gorsuch and former President Barack Obama were both members of the 1991 graduating class at Harvard Law School.

Norm Eisen, a former Obama administration "ethics czar" and fellow Harvard Law classmate, spoke fondly of Gorsuch as rumors of his nomination leaked early Tuesday.

"Hearing rumors Trump's likely Supreme Court pick is Neil Gorsuch, my (and President Obama's!) 1991 Harvard Law classmate. If so, a great guy!" he wrote on Twitter.

4. He has a lot in common with Scalia

Both Trump and Gorsuch praised Scalia during the announcement on Tuesday. Gorsuch is seen by many as a natural replacement for the revered conservative justice.

"He is Scalia, in many respects," former presidential candidate Rick Santorum said shortly after Gorsuch's nomination was announced.

Most experts point to Gorsuch's strict textual interpretation of the law and tradition of defending religious rights as signs that he follow in Scalia's footsteps as a conservative stalwart on the court.

5. He could be the first former Supreme Court clerk to serve with his former boss

Early in his law career, Gorsuch clerked for both Supreme Court Justice Byron White, whom he praised during his remarks during Tuesday's announcement, and Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy.

At the age of 80, Kennedy still serves on the Supreme Court, and according to SCOTUSBlog Gorsuch would be the first justice to serve alongside his former boss if he were to be confirmed. Kennedy, nominated by former President Ronald Reagan, has been known as the swing vote on the Court in recent years.