Young: Too old for U.S. Supreme Court

The Detroit News

When Michigan Supreme Court Chief Justice Robert Young recused himself from the election recount effort on Friday he cited his inclusion on a list by President-elect Donald Trump to be considered for the Supreme Court and the unlikely odds that he would be nominated.

Young disqualified himself from the case “with reluctance,” reiterating his own previous comments that “anybody can make a list” and suggesting that, at age 65, the odds of Trump picking him for the U.S. Supreme Court are “extraordinarily remote.”

“I do so in order that the decision made by my colleagues in this case will not be legitimately challenged by base speculation and groundless innuendo by the partisans in this controversy and beyond,” Young said in a statement.

“My presence on “the list” creates a conflict. Even though no one representing the president-elect has ever contacted me or asked whether I am interested in serving on the United States Supreme Court, being listed is a potential boon, however remote. And now that the person offering this boon is a party in my Court, it is appropriate to remedy this conflict by declining to participate in this matter, Young wrote.

In a footnote in his rescual order, Young also noted that his chances of being confirmed to the nation’s high court are as good as those of one his Harvard Law School classmates — Judge Merrick Garland, whose nomination by President Barack Obama still waits a Senate hearing.

“Indeed, I am confident that the only two sexagenarians guaranteed to never be confirmed by the Senate are me and my law school classmate, Judge Merrick Garland,” Young wrote

Michigan Justice Joan Larsen, 47, also disqualified herself from the recount case conceding that her appearance on a Trump campaign list of 21 possible Supreme Court nominees created a conflict.

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“I did not seek inclusion on the list, had no notice of my inclusion before its publication, and have had not contact with the president-elect, or his campaign, regarding the vacancy,” Larsen wrote. “Yet the president-elect and his surrogates have repeatedly affirmed his intention to select someone from the list to fill the vacancy.”