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Supreme Court nominee Barrett is mother of 7, conservative Catholic, law professor

By Larry McShane, New York Daily News on

Published in Political News

Federal Court Judge Amy Coney Barrett is many things: A Louisiana native. Former clerk for late Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia. A conservative Catholic, a mother of seven, a Notre Dame Law School professor.

And now, President Donald Trump's choice to succeed the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg and became the youngest justice on the current court.

The 48-year-old native of New Orleans became a finalist for the nation's highest court three years ago when Justice Brett Kavanaugh instead received the nod, and she emerged as an immediate front runner for the current opening in the nine-judge panel.

Barrett was a relative unknown until the Trump decision that came three years after the president nominated her for a seat Chicago-based U.S. Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit. During her time on the bench, Barrett wrote several dissenting opinions that critics said illustrated demonstrated her consistent conservative leanings.

Barrett is married to a former federal prosecutor, Jesse Barrett, a partner in a South Bend, Ind., law firm. The couple are parents to seven kids, including one child with special needs and two adopted from Haiti.

She was a Phi Beta Kappa and magna cum laude graduate of Rhodes College in 1994, graduating three years later from the Notre Dame Law School. Barrett then clerked for U.S. Circuit Judge Laurence Silberman of the D.C. Circuit in 1997-98 before working for Scalia in 1998-99.

 

She practiced law in Washington, D.C., for three years before becoming a law professor at Notre Dame Law School in 2002.

When Trump nominated Barrett to the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in 2017, she was asked about her Catholicism and its impact on her view of issues like abortion and LGBTQ rights.

"I would stress that my personal church affiliation or my religious belief would not bear in the discharge of my duties as a judge," she replied.

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