Larry Thompson Interviews Supreme Court Justice Gorsuch
On September 18, 2019, Finch McCranie Counsel Larry Thompson interviewed Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch about his upcoming book, A Republic, If You Can Keep It, at the George W. Bush Presidential Center in Dallas, Texas. Mr. Thompson and Justice Gorsuch, who have known each other for more than 15 years, worked together on the Federal Judiciary’s Committee on Rules of Practice and Procedure under the Bush administration before Mr. Thompson joined Finch McCranie. During the hour-long interview, the two discussed several topics, including how becoming a member of the Supreme Court has changed Justice Gorsuch’s life, behind-the-scenes life at the Supreme Court, Separation of Powers and the three-tiered system of the United States government, civility in the American justice system, and access to justice.
Mr. Thompson opened the interview by asking Justice Gorsuch what the impetus was for writing his recent book. Justice Gorsuch explained that the confirmation process to the United States Supreme Court prompted him to write his book. Justice Gorsuch stated he wanted to speak about civics, civility, the Separation of Powers, and the Judge’s role under the United States Constitution. Upon Mr. Thompson inquiring about Justice Gorsuch’s chapter about civility, Justice Gorsuch replied, “Do we disagree on the Supreme Court of the United States? Sure, we do, of course we do. . . but we know how to [disagree] respectfully, kindly, and sometimes have fun along the way.”
Mr. Thompson probed Justice Gorsuch about his chapter on access to justice and Justice Gorsuch’s optimism about the future of America. On access to justice, Justice Gorsuch retorted, “Well, Larry has been a leader on [access to justice] for sure and I admire his work on it. So, [Larry] can probably talk about this more eloquently than I, but as a lawyer and a judge, I think we have to admit that as great as our system is, there is room for improvement.” Justice Gorsuch continued, “I worry about a world where the prosecutor can pick his person rather than pursue a crime, and I know you care about that a lot, Larry.” Mr. Thompson followed up the discussion by asking Justice Gorsuch, “Despite the issues you raise in your book, are you optimistic about our future?” Justice Gorsuch replied, “Oh Larry, I am wildly optimistic about this Country. I get to meet people every day who just love this Country.”
Over the course of the interview, Justice Gorsuch repeatedly acknowledged Mr. Thompson’s long-time commitment to civics and government service. Prior to joining Finch McCranie, Mr. Thompson served four years as U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Georgia. From 2001 to 2003 Mr. Thompson served as the Deputy U.S. Attorney General under President George W. Bush. Beginning in 2011, Mr. Thompson has been involved in academia, as the John A. Sibley Professor of Corporate and Business Law at the University of Georgia Law School. Following his service as the Deputy U.S. Attorney General, Mr. Thompson joined the private sector, and served as General Counsel and Vice President of PepsiCo for a decade before joining Finch McCranie LLP as counsel in 2015.
Click here to watch Larry Thompson’s full interview of Justice Gorsuch.