COURTS/REGULATIONS/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “It has been practically a given that anyone nominated for a federal judgeship by a Republican president had to pass an unspoken litmus test — usually on abortion but often on any number of divisive social issues.
The Trump administration has a new litmus test: reining in what conservatives call “the administrative state.” With surprising frankness, the White House has laid out a plan to fill the courts with judges devoted to a legal doctrine that challenges the broad power federal agencies have to interpret laws and enforce regulations, often without being subject to judicial oversight. Those not on board with this agenda, the White House has said, are unlikely to be nominated by President Trump. The criteria were first used last year in his Supreme Court selection of Neil M. Gorsuch, an appeals court judge who became something of a hero on the right for chastising his fellow jurists for being too deferential to government functionaries. And antipathy to regulations has been a factor in the selection of the dozens of judicial nominations since then.”
-Jeremy W. Peters, “Trump’s New Judicial Litmus Test: Shrinking ‘the Administrative State’” The New York Times online, Mar. 26, 2018