Justice Samuel Alito, Associate Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court

Justice Samuel Alito

Associate Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court

Samuel Anthony Alito, Jr., was born in April 1950 in Trenton, New Jersey. He earned an undergraduate degree from Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, then received his Juris Doctor at the Yale Law School. While at Princeton, he took time to study in Italy, writing a thesis on that country’s legal system. He was a member of the school’s Army ROTC program, attending a six-week basic training camp at Fort Knox, Kentucky. He was commissioned a second lieutenant in the Army Signal Corps and assigned to the U.S. Army Reserve. He served a period of active duty after graduating from Yale, and was a captain when he received an honorable discharge.

After law school, he clerked at the U.S. Third Circuit Court of Appeals, before becoming an Assistant United States Attorney for the District of New Jersey, a position he held for four years. He was named Assistant to the U.S. Solicitor General, which gave him the opportunity to argue a dozen cases before the Supreme Court on behalf of the federal government. After four years at that post, he became Deputy Assistant Attorney General during the tenure of Edwin Meese, later becoming the United States Attorney for the District of New Jersey. He taught classes in constitutional law as an adjunct professor at Seton Hall University School of Law in Newark.

Alito was nominated by President George H.W. Bush to be a judge on the U.S. Third Circuit Court of Appeals. He was confirmed by unanimous consent in the Senate and received his commission in April 1990. In 2005, President George W. Bush nominated Alito to a seat on the United States Supreme Court, replacing retiring Justice Sandra Day O’Connor. After a failed filibuster attempt, the Senate confirmed him on a near party-line vote of 58-42. He assumed office on January 31, 2006.

He is married to Martha-Ann Bomgardner Alito and they have two grown children. He is Catholic.

In the News…

In October 2020, with the presidential election looming, three Supreme court justices issued opinions that seemed prepared to endorse a legal theory that would radically reshape how federal elections are conducted. The theory would give state legislatures independent power, not subject to review by state courts, to set election rules at odds with state constitutions, and to draw congressional maps warped by partisan gerrymandering. 

But the Supreme Court did not resolve the existence or scope of the theory, often called the independent state legislature doctrine, in cases concerning the 2020 election. 

Now, an emergency application filed with the U.S. Supreme Court by legislators in North Carolina seeks the Court to consider restoring a voting map drawn by the State Legislature and rejected as a partisan gerrymander by the State Supreme Court. The justices have determined to hear the application. 

“This case represents an exceptionally important and recurring question of constitutional law, namely, the extent of a state court’s authority to reject rules adopted by a state legislature for use in conducting federal elections,” Justice Samuel Alito wrote. He was joined by Justices Clarence Thomas and Neil Gorsuch. 

The matter will be heard within the next week. 

Contact this Leader…

Did you pray for Justice Alito today? You can let him know at:

The Honorable Justice Samuel Alito
Supreme Court of the United States
1 First Street NE
Washington, DC 20543


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