Neil Gorsuch Gets 3 Grunt Jobs on Court

Get ready for lots of note-taking, justice
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 12, 2017 5:59 PM CDT
Neil Gorsuch Gets 3 Grunt Jobs on Court
Neil Gorsuch at his confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee.   (AP Photo/Susan Walsh, File)

New Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch has more than weighty legal decisions awaiting. As the junior justice, Gorsuch also has some decidedly lesser responsibilities, and three in particular have been drawing attention, reports Quartz. First, he has to take notes when the panel of nine meets privately to discuss cases, and he speaks last. Second, in those same meetings, which are attended by the justices only, he has to answer the door. Samuel Alito recalled taking over those duties from Stephen Breyer, who had been the court newbie for more than a decade. The habit was hard to break, as evidenced every time there was a knock. "Before I could even start to get out of the chair, Justice Breyer was out of his chair and headed for the door and the chief justice had to say, 'Steve, sit down, that's not your job anymore,'" Alito said, per the AP.

Finally, there's the job as head of the cafeteria committee. Gorsuch will have a say, like it or not, in a variety of kitchen matters. Elena Kagan, who will happily move on from the rookie position she’s held since 2010, used this title to her advantage, winning favor by installing a frozen yogurt machine. But then there's the complaints, which the senior justices are apparently happy to pass along in their private conferences while feigning ignorance about who should receive them. Kagan recounts a typical comment: “‘Who’s our representative to the cafeteria committee again?’" one will say. "Like they don’t know, right? And then they’ll say, ‘This soup is very salty.'” (Read more Neil Gorsuch stories.)

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