Dr. Arnn inter­viewed White House Counsel Don McGahn at CPAC 2018. | Col­legian

In an interview with College Pres­ident Larry Arnn on Feb. 22, White House Counsel Don McGahn praised Pres­ident Donald Trump’s decision to appoint Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court.

“What the pres­ident looks for first is people with excellent cre­den­tials,” McGhan said. “What he looks for is folks who have demon­strated some sort of courage, some sort of ability to stand strong in face of adversity, people who you know when they get on the bench will not change and turn into someone else.”

Arnn noted Gorsuch’s expertise on issues related to Chevron def­erence, a term ref­er­encing a Supreme Court case from 1984 that is often cited by courts to allow unelected agencies — not Con­gress — to pass reg­u­la­tions.

“The EPA, for example, is told to make the air clean and the water clean,” McGahn said. “Well there’s not a lot of detail on that, which leaves the bureau­cracy to fashion what would oth­erwise be thought of as leg­is­lation. Con­gress used to leg­islate more; they don’t seem to leg­islate much anymore. They tend to do broader statutes.”

McGhan noted Gorsuch’s con­sti­tu­tional approach to this bureau­cratic sort of leg­is­lation.

“He, frankly, stuck his neck out on an issue that anyone else would fear would hurt their chances of pro­motion to a higher court. Judge Gorsuch was not that type of person,” McGhan said.

So far, McGhan noted, the pres­ident has nom­i­nated a number of people who have expe­rience, if not expertise, with regard to the government’s reg­u­latory appa­ratus. The judicial selection is also less of a single-issue litmus test than past years, McGhan said.

“This pres­ident is looking more for a well-rounded holistic person that really under­stands sep­a­ration of powers, the role of the reg­u­latory state, the role of the leg­is­lature and the exec­utive.”

Arnn fol­lowed up by ques­tioning McGhan about gov­ern­mental sep­a­ration of powers and about what each branch can do with regard to cutting back on bureau­cratic reg­u­la­tions.

The first thing would be for Con­gress to pay more attention to the details of leg­is­lation,” McGhan said. “Second, over­sight is very important…They’ve got to really roll up their sleeves and see how this leg­is­lation works out, not just do the sort of over­sight that gets head­lines, but do the over­sight that gets into the nitty-gritty of how laws are being implemented…Then the third thing Con­gress can do is, with all due respect, read the Con­sti­tution.”

One way in which the Trump admin­is­tration has increased over­sight on reg­u­la­tions is with regard to an exec­utive order that directed two reg­u­la­tions to be removed from the books for every one insti­tuted. That ratio is actually around 22:1, according to McGhan.

“The order shows how much the pres­ident is com­mitted to cutting through the red tape and getting back to the more familiar struc­tures that the Founders and pre­vious gen­er­a­tions have relied on.”

“Dr. Arnn did a great job during the interview,” senior Razi Lane said. “He was able to explore how the legal pri­or­ities of the Trump admin­is­tration have man­i­fested in the exec­utive orders that have been signed recently, which I thought was very good to know.”

Lane also said Judge Gorsuch was a “phe­nomenal” choice by the pres­ident.

“I think it was great for them to have a con­ver­sation about how critical the role is of our judges in our current American regime, espe­cially on the Supreme Court,” Lane said.

Senior Katarina Bradford said she enjoyed learning about McGahn’s role at the White House and how he advises Pres­ident Trump on what federal judges to appoint in the federal court system.

“In the past two years I’ve had expe­rience in working at a law firm that spe­cializes in reli­gious liberty,” Bradford said. “The fact that Don McGahn has advised Pres­ident Trump to appoint these amazing con­ser­v­ative federal judges has allowed us to make massive leaps and bounds for the cause of reli­gious liberty and many other con­ser­v­ative causes.”

McGhan said Trump ran for pres­ident based on con­sti­tu­tional prin­ciples.

“You don’t hear from the main­stream media about this, but there’s so much good work going on trying to restore us back to the fun­da­mentals.”

  • Alexan­derYp­si­lantis

    “You don’t hear from the main­stream media about this, but there’s so much good work going on trying to restore us back to the fun­da­mentals.”

    I have no doubt about that. Not that I watch the MSM anyway, haven’t for over 25 years. Don’t need the agra­vation.