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In the News: John Roberts
John Roberts made the news in Scholastic News Editions 3, 4, 5/6, and Junior Scholastic on September 26, 2005

John G. Roberts
John G. Roberts
(Photo: Pablo Martinez Monsivais/AP Wide World)
A somber John G. Roberts Jr. stepped up to the podium in early September, just moments after President George W. Bush had nominated him to lead the nation's highest court.

"I am honored and humbled by the confidence that the President has shown in me," said Roberts of his nomination as Chief Justice of the Supreme Court. "And I am very much aware that, if I am confirmed, I would succeed a man that I deeply respect and admire, a man who has been very kind to me for 25 years."

That man was William H. Rehnquist, who died on September 4, at age 80 after serving as Chief Justice for the last 18 of his 34 years on the Court. If confirmed, Judge Roberts would become the Court's 17th Chief Justice.

Roberts's admiration for Rehnquist dates back a quarter of a century, when the young Harvard Law School graduate clerked for Rehnquist. Roberts would bring a wealth of legal experience to the Court, as well as conservative credentials. He worked for both Presidents George H. W. Bush and Ronald Reagan.

Since 2003, Roberts has served as a judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, which is widely regarded as the most powerful federal court outside the Supreme Court. During his distinguished career, Roberts has argued 39 cases before the Supreme Court.

At age 50, Judge Roberts would be the youngest Chief Justice in more than 200 years. His relative youth provides him with the opportunity to influence the Court's direction for years to come—an assignment he takes seriously.

"I am humbled by [President Bush's] confidence and, if confirmed, I will do everything I can to be worthy of the high trust he has placed in me," said Roberts.