The First Indian Supreme Court Justice?

Sri Srinivasan pic via

Sri Srinivasan pic via

Sri Srinivasan is the perfect pick for the vacant seat on the Supreme Court of the United States. No legislator in the country can touch his combination of powerful credentials and diverse experience. And choosing Mr. Srinivasan makes the Supreme Court look more like America — three women, one Latina, one African American and one Asian. His appointment would be an incredibly validating moment for tens of millions of Americans.

In 2013, a profile in the New Yorker deemed him the Supreme Court Nominee-in-Waiting. He’s also pro-business, an advocate for immigrants, and a bipartisan moderate who has defended the rights of both the GOP and Democrats. That latter point is key to his potential success at this controversial juncture. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell insisted he’d block any new judicial nominations made by President Obama in the wake of Antonin Scalia’s death. Here’s why Srinivasan will be both hard for the GOP to reject and a boon for the state of our nation:

1. He cares about law, not politics
The GOP bristles at political ideologues, or liberal justices who allegedly “legislate from the bench.” Srinivasan’s colleagues report that he’s utterly objective and devoted to the rule of law, with no obvious political leanings. Yes, he helped represent Al Gore in the Florida recount and donated to Obama’s re-election campaign. But he also served under Reagan appointee Sandra Day O’Connor, and has the support of none other than GOP hopeful Ted Cruz. The only thing that everyone agrees on is he’s a brilliant legislator and one of fewer than 100 US lawyers who consistently and successfully brings cases before the Supreme Court. In a political landscape as charged as ours, his bipartisan chameleon brand will be a strong unifier.

2. He fights for the big guys…
His clients include Exxon Mobil Corp and Rio Tinto, a multi-national mining corporation. Because of his devotion to the rule of law rather than “the rule of a judge,” he respects the rights of his clients to fair representation, no matter what the political stakes may be. That brand of strict constructionism is appealing to the traditional values of the GOP and could diffuse some of the hot button issues that divide our nation. He’s neither beholden to corporate interests nor unnecessarily wary of them, and he’s something of an expert in the workings of corporate America. As a Stanford MBA he would be the first nominee with formal experience in business and law, a unique and unquestionably desirable skill set.

3. …And the little guys
His impartiality has led him from big ticket corporate clients to pro bono cases on behalf of immigrants like Salman Abuelhawa, who in 2009 was charged with a felony that meant 24 life-ruining years in prison. Srinivasan successfully appealed to the Court’s sense of the rational, arguing that his charge was a technicality worthy of a misdemeanor punishment.

As with the major corporations he’s represented, Srinivasan supports his clients dispassionately and deftly, confident in the fair workings of the correctly interpreted U.S. law. As Jeffrey Toobin, senior legal analyst for CNN, advises, keep your eye on Sri Srinivasan.

—Kalpesh Kapadia, CEO | SelfScore

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