Who is the man sitting behind Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch during his confirmation hearings before the Senate Judiciary Committee? That’s lawyer Michael McGinley, who currently works as associate counsel to President Donald Trump in the White House. He is sitting next to Mary Elizabeth Taylor.

Here’s what you need to know about McGinley.


1. He’s Currently an Associate Counsel to President Trump

In January 2017, McGinley joined the White House as an associate counsel. He works under Don McGahn to help advise the president on legal matters.

McGinley was hired by Trump officially in March.

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2. He Worked as a Law Clerk for Both Gorsuch & Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito

According to his bio at Bancroft PLLC, McGinley worked as a law clerk for Gorsuch when he was on the U.S. Court of Apparels for the Tenth Circuit. He was also a law clerk for Supreme court Justice Samuel Alito.

McGinley worked for Gorsuch from 2009 to 2010. He worked in Alito’s office for a year, from July 2014 to July 2015.

His Bancroft PLCC bio notes that he is experienced at representing clients at the federal and state level. His bio reads, in part:

He has authored briefs, motions, and administrative submissions on a wide range of issues, including federal jurisdiction, Chevron deference, preemption, the Federal Arbitration Act, voting rights, free speech, and religious freedom. In addition to those written filings, Mr. McGinley has cross-examined an adverse party in federal court, conducted a number of depositions, and advised corporate clients on strategic and compliance-based matters.

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3. He’s a Graduate of Harvard Law School

According to his LinkedIn page, McGinley graduated from Harvard Law School in 2009. He also earned his B.A. at the University of Notre Dame in 2006.

His Bancroft bio notes that he was the Supreme Court Chair of the Harvard Law Review and an assistant articles editor for the Harvard Journal of Law & Public Policy. While at Notre Dame, he won the Willis D. Nutting Award for the Program of Liberal Arts.

His bio notes that he’s also been admitted to the Virginia and Colorado state bar and is also on the District of Columbia Bar. He also has a published article, Textualism as Fair Notice.

His first job after graduating from college was in Gorsuch’s office.

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4. He Is 1 of Several Former Jones Day & Kirland Lawyers Working in the White House

After leaving Gorsuch’s office, McGinley joined Jones Day as an associate. He was there for a year and a half, leaving in April 2012 to join Bancroft. After his year with Alito, he re-joined Bancroft, only to leave in October 2016. He then joined Kirkland & Ellis LLP, where he was until Trump hired him.

McGinley worked for two of Trump’s favorite firms to pluck lawyers from. Fourteen lawyers who were working for Jones Day were chosen to join the Trump Administration, the firm announced. McGahn even worked for the firm.

Law 360 notes that several Kirland lawyers also joined the administration. McGinley joined fellow partners John Eisenberg, John Moran and Claire Murray in the Trump Administration.

According to Law 360, Trump has also picked attorneys from Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck LLP, Williams & Connolly LLP, Davis Polk & Wardell LLP, Paul Hastings LLP and Sullivan & Cromewell LLP.

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5. He’s Sitting Next to White House Staffer Mary Elizabeth Taylor at the Gorsuch Hearings

McGinley was seen at Gorsuch’s hearings sitting next to Mary Elizabeth Taylor during the second day of the hearing. Taylor who works in the White House legislative affairs unit. She is a former Mitch McConnell staffer and graduate of Bryn Mawr College.

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