Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit
February 9, 1982 – February 5, 1988
|Preceded by||Carl E. McGowan|
|Succeeded by||Clarence Thomas|
United States Attorney General
October 20, 1973 – January 4, 1974
|Preceded by||Elliot Richardson|
|Succeeded by||William B. Saxbe|
35th Solicitor General of the United States
March 21, 1973 – January 20, 1977
|Preceded by||Erwin Griswold|
|Succeeded by||Wade H. McCree|
|Born||March 01 1927|
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, U.S.
|Died||December 19 2012 (aged 85)|
Arlington, Virginia, U.S.
(m. 1952; d. 1980)
Mary Ellen Pohl
(m. 1982; d. 2012)
Robert Heron Bork (March 1, 1927 – December 19, 2012) was an American judge, government official, and legal scholar who served as the Solicitor General of the United States from 1973 to 1977. A professor at Yale Law School by occupation, he later served as a judge on the influential U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit from 1982 to 1988. In 1987, President Ronald Reagan nominated Bork to the U.S. Supreme Court, but the U.S. Senate rejected his nomination.
The contentious confirmation battle that led to the Senate rejecting Bork's nomination revealed a bitter partisan climate that valued political affiliation and beliefs over the ability and experience to serve as a Supreme Court justice. Attacks that were filled with inaccuracies, such as that by Senator Ted Kennedy at the hearings, have had long-lasting consequences. Despite being recognized as one of the most influential legal scholars of the late twentieth century, Bork's legacy includes the use of his name as the verb "to bork," referring to the obstruction of a person being able to take office through systematically defaming or vilifying them.
Bork was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. His father was Harry Philip Bork Jr. (1897–1974), a steel company purchasing agent, and his mother was Elisabeth (née Kunkle; 1898–2004), a schoolteacher. His father was of German and Irish ancestry, while his mother was of Pennsylvania Dutch (German) descent.
Bork attended the Hotchkiss School in Lakeville, Connecticut, and earned B.A. and J.D. degrees from the University of Chicago. While pursuing his bachelor's degree he became a brother of the international social fraternity of Phi Gamma Delta. While in law school, he served on the University of Chicago Law Review.
He married Claire Davidson in 1952. They had a daughter, Ellen, and two sons, Robert and Charles.
At Chicago he was awarded a Phi Beta Kappa key with his J.D. degree in 1953, and passed the bar in Illinois that same year. After a period of service in the United States Marine Corps, Bork began as a lawyer in private practice in 1954 at Kirkland & Ellis in Chicago, and then took a position at Yale Law School in 1962. He served as Solicitor-General from 1972 until 1977, when he returned to Yale.
In 1980, his wife Claire died of cancer. In 1982, Bork married Mary Ellen Pohl, a Catholic religious sister turned activist.
In 1982 Bork was appointed to the US Court of Appeals, and in 1987 President Ronald Reagan nominated him to fill a vacancy on the US Supreme Court. The Senate rejected his nomination, and Bork resigned his judgeship to return to teaching the law.
Bork wrote several books, including the two best-sellers The Tempting of America, about his judicial philosophy and his nomination battle, and Slouching Towards Gomorrah: Modern Liberalism and American Decline, in which he argued that the rise of the New Left in the 1960s in the U.S. undermined the moral standards necessary for civil society, and spawned a generation of intellectuals who oppose Western civilization. During the period these books were written, as well as most of his adult life, Bork was an agnostic. He converted to Catholicism in 2003.
Bork died of complications from heart disease at the Virginia Hospital Center in Arlington, Virginia, on December 19, 2012. He is interred at Fairfax Memorial Park.
Bork's legal career led him to serve as a legal professor and scholar, government official, and judge.
Bork served as a professor at Yale Law School from 1962 to 1975, and again from 1977 to 1981. Among his students during this time were Bill Clinton, Hillary Clinton, Anita Hill, Robert Reich, Jerry Brown, John R. Bolton, Samuel Issacharoff, and Cynthia Estlund.
Bork became a prominent advocate of originalism, calling for judges to adhere to the framers' original understanding of the United States Constitution. His 1971 article, "Neutral Principles and Some First Amendment Problems," published in the Indiana Law Journal championed the view that justices should declare laws unconstitutional only when elected officials had clearly acted in defiance of the original understanding or original meaning of constitutional language, in other words a position designed to limit judicial power.
He also became an influential antitrust scholar. In his book, The Antitrust Paradox, he argued that consumers often benefited from corporate mergers, and that many then-current readings of the antitrust laws were economically irrational and hurt consumers. He posited that the primary focus of antitrust laws should be on consumer welfare rather than ensuring competition, as fostering competition of companies within an industry has a natural built-in tendency to allow, and even help, many poorly run companies with methodologies and practices that are both inefficient and expensive to continue in business simply for the sake of competition, to the detriment of both consumers and society. Bork's writings on antitrust law—together with those of Richard Posner and other Chicago School thinkers—were influential in causing a shift in the Supreme Court's approach to antitrust laws.
From 1973 to 1977, Bork served as Solicitor General in the U.S. Department of Justice under President Richard Nixon and President Gerald Ford.
As solicitor general, he argued several high-profile cases before the Supreme Court in the 1970s, including 1974's Milliken v. Bradley, where his brief in support of the State of Michigan was influential among the justices. Chief Justice Warren Burger called Bork the most effective counsel to appear before the court during his tenure. Bork hired many young attorneys as assistants who went on to have successful careers, including judges Danny Boggs and Frank H. Easterbrook as well as Robert Reich, later secretary of labor in the Clinton administration.
"Saturday Night Massacre"
On October 20, 1973, Bork was instrumental in the "Saturday Night Massacre" when President Richard Nixon ordered the firing of Watergate Special Prosecutor Archibald Cox following Cox's request for tapes of his Oval Office conversations. Nixon initially ordered U.S. Attorney General Elliot Richardson to fire Cox. Richardson resigned rather than carry out the order. Richardson's top deputy, Deputy Attorney General William Ruckelshaus, also considered the order "fundamentally wrong" and resigned, making Bork acting attorney general. When Nixon reiterated his order, Bork complied and fired Cox.
Bork claimed he carried out the order under pressure from Nixon's attorneys and intended to resign immediately afterward, but was persuaded by Richardson and Ruckelshaus to stay on for the good of the Justice Department. Bork remained acting attorney general until the appointment of William B. Saxbe on January 4, 1974. In his posthumously published memoirs, Bork claimed that after he carried out the order, Nixon promised him the next seat on the Supreme Court, though Bork didn't take the offer seriously as he believed that Watergate had left Nixon too politically compromised to appoint another justice. Nixon would never get the chance to carry out his promise to Bork, as the next Supreme Court vacancy came after Nixon resigned and Gerald Ford assumed the presidency, with Ford instead nominating John Paul Stevens following the 1975 retirement of William O. Douglas.
United States Circuit Judge
Bork was a circuit judge for the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit from 1982 to 1988. He was nominated by President Reagan on December 7, 1981, and was confirmed with a unanimous consent voice vote by the Senate on February 8, 1982.
One of his opinions while on the D.C. Circuit was Dronenburg v. Zech, 741 F.2d 1388, decided in 1984. This case involved James L. Dronenburg, a sailor who had been administratively discharged from the navy for engaging in homosexual conduct. Dronenburg argued that his discharge violated his right to privacy. This argument was rejected in an opinion written by Bork and joined by Antonin Scalia, in which Bork critiqued the line of Supreme Court cases upholding a right to privacy.
In rejecting Dronenburg's suggestion for a rehearing en banc, the D.C. Circuit issued four separate opinions, including one by Bork (again joined by Scalia), who wrote that "no principle had been articulated [by the Supreme Court] that enabled us to determine whether appellant's case fell within or without that principle."
In 1986 President Reagan considered nominating Bork to the Supreme Court after Chief Justice Burger retired. Reagan ultimately chose Rehnquist for chief justice and Bork's D.C. Circuit colleague, Judge Antonin Scalia, as a new associate justice.
U.S. Supreme Court nomination
President Reagan nominated Bork for associate justice of the Supreme Court on July 1, 1987, to replace retiring Associate Justice Lewis Powell. A hotly contested United States Senate debate over Bork's nomination ensued. Opposition was partly fueled by civil rights and women's rights groups, concerned about Bork's opposition to the authority claimed by the federal government to impose standards of voting fairness upon states (at his confirmation hearings for the position of solicitor general, he supported the rights of Southern states to impose a poll tax), and his stated desire to roll back civil rights decisions of the Warren and Burger courts. Bork is one of only four Supreme Court nominees (along with William Rehnquist, Samuel Alito, and Brett Kavanaugh) to have been opposed by the American Civil Liberties Union. Bork was also criticized for being an "advocate of disproportionate powers for the executive branch of Government, almost executive supremacy," most notably, according to critics, for his role in the "Saturday Night Massacre."
Before Supreme Court justice Lewis Powell's expected retirement on June 27, 1987, some Senate Democrats had asked liberal leaders to "form a 'solid phalanx' of opposition" if President Ronald Reagan nominated an "ideological extremist" to replace him, assuming it would tilt the court rightward. Democrats also warned Reagan there would be a fight if Bork were nominated. Nevertheless, Reagan nominated Bork for the seat on July 1, 1987.
To pro-choice rights legal groups, Bork's originalist views and his belief that the Constitution did not contain a general "right to privacy" were viewed as a clear signal that, should he become a justice of the Supreme Court, he would vote to reverse the Court's 1973 decision in Roe v. Wade. Accordingly, a large number of groups mobilized to press for Bork's rejection, and the resulting 1987 Senate confirmation hearings became an intensely partisan battle.
Following Bork's nomination, Senator Ted Kennedy took to the Senate floor with a strong condemnation of him, declaring:
Robert Bork's America is a land in which women would be forced into back-alley abortions, blacks would sit at segregated lunch counters, rogue police could break down citizens' doors in midnight raids, schoolchildren could not be taught about evolution, writers and artists could be censored at the whim of the Government, and the doors of the Federal courts would be shut on the fingers of millions of citizens for whom the judiciary is—and is often the only—protector of the individual rights that are the heart of our democracy ... President Reagan is still our president. But he should not be able to reach out from the muck of Irangate, reach into the muck of Watergate and impose his reactionary vision of the Constitution on the Supreme Court and the next generation of Americans. No justice would be better than this injustice.
Bork responded, "There was not a line in that speech that was accurate." In an obituary of Kennedy, The Economist remarked that Bork may well have been correct, "but it worked." Bork also contended in his best-selling book, The Tempting of America, that the brief prepared for Senator Joe Biden, head of the Senate Judiciary Committee, "so thoroughly misrepresented a plain record that it easily qualifies as world class in the category of scurrility." Opponents of Bork's nomination found the arguments against him justified claiming that Bork believed the Civil Rights Act was unconstitutional, and he supported poll taxes, literacy tests for voting, mandated school prayer, and sterilization as a requirement for a job, while opposing free speech rights for non-political speech and privacy rights for gay conduct.
However, in 1988, an analysis published in The Western Political Quarterly of amicus curiae briefs filed by U.S. Solicitors General during the Warren and Burger Courts found that during Bork's tenure in the position during the Nixon and Ford Administrations (1973–1977), Bork took liberal positions in the aggregate as often as Thurgood Marshall did during the Johnson Administration (1965–1967) and more often than Wade H. McCree did during the Carter Administration (1977–1981), in part because Bork filed briefs in favor of the litigants in civil rights cases 75 percent of the time (contradicting a previous review of his civil rights record published in 1983).
On October 23, 1987, the Senate denied Bork's confirmation, with 42 Senators voting in favor and 58 voting against. Two Democratic senators, David Boren (D-OK) and Ernest Hollings (D-SC), voted in his favor, with 6 Republican senators John Chafee (R-RI), Bob Packwood (R-OR), Arlen Specter (R-PA), Robert Stafford (R-VT), John Warner (R-VA), and Lowell P. Weicker Jr. (R-CT) voting against him.
The vacant court seat Bork was nominated to eventually went to Judge Anthony Kennedy, who was unanimously approved by the Senate, 97–0. Bork, unhappy with his treatment in the nomination process, resigned his appellate court judgeship in 1988.
Following his failure to be confirmed, Bork resigned his seat on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit and was for several years both a professor at George Mason University School of Law and a senior fellow at the American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research, a Washington, DC based think tank. He was also a fellow at the Hudson Institute. Bork also consulted for Netscape in the Microsoft litigation. He later served as a visiting professor at the University of Richmond School of Law and was a professor at Ave Maria School of Law in Naples, Florida.
In 2011, Bork worked as a legal adviser for the presidential campaign of Republican Mitt Romney.
Bork is known for his theory that the only way to reconcile the role of the judiciary in the U.S. government against what he terms the "Madisonian" or "counter-majoritarian" dilemma of the judiciary making law without popular approval is for constitutional adjudication to be guided by the framers' original understanding of the United States Constitution. Reiterating that it is a court's task to adjudicate and not to "legislate from the bench," he advocated that judges exercise restraint in deciding cases, emphasizing that the role of the courts is to frame "neutral principles" (a term borrowed from Herbert Wechsler) and not simply ad hoc pronouncements or subjective value judgments. Bork once said, "The truth is that the judge who looks outside the Constitution always looks inside himself and nowhere else."
Bork built on the influential critiques of the Warren Court authored by Alexander Bickel, who criticized the Supreme Court under Earl Warren, alleging shoddy and inconsistent reasoning, undue activism, and misuse of historical materials. Bork's critique was harder-edged than Bickel's: "We are increasingly governed not by law or elected representatives but by an unelected, unrepresentative, unaccountable committee of lawyers applying no will but their own." Bork's writings influenced the opinions of judges such as Associate Justice Antonin Scalia and Chief Justice William Rehnquist of the U.S. Supreme Court, and sparked a vigorous debate within legal academia about how to interpret the Constitution.
In The Tempting of America, Bork explained his support for the Supreme Court's desegregation decision in Brown v. Board of Education:
By 1954, when Brown came up for decision, it had been apparent for some time that segregation rarely if ever produced equality. Quite aside from any question of psychology, the physical facilities provided for blacks were not as good as those provided for whites. That had been demonstrated in a long series of cases… The Court's realistic choice, therefore, was either to abandon the quest for equality by allowing segregation or to forbid segregation in order to achieve equality. There was no third choice. Either choice would violate one aspect of the original understanding, but there was no possibility of avoiding that. Since equality and segregation were mutually inconsistent, though the ratifiers did not understand that, both could not be honored. When that is seen, it is obvious the Court must choose equality and prohibit state-imposed segregation. The purpose that brought the fourteenth amendment into being was equality before the law, and equality, not separation, was written into the law.
In 2003, Bork published Coercing Virtue: The Worldwide Rule Of Judges, an American Enterprise Institute book that includes Bork's philosophical objections to the phenomenon of incorporating international ethical and legal guidelines into the fabric of domestic law. In particular, he focused on problems he sees as inherent in the federal judiciary of three nations, Israel, Canada, and the United States—countries where he believes courts have exceeded their discretionary powers, and have discarded precedent and common law, and in their place substituted their own liberal judgment.
Following Bork's death, Antonin Scalia referred to him as "one of the most influential legal scholars of the past 50 years" and "a good man and a loyal citizen." Mike Lee, senator from Utah, called Bork "one of America's greatest jurists and a brilliant legal mind."
He was regarded as a hero to conservatives, who "for decades, decades, Judge Bork was a major architect of the conservative rebuttal to what he considered liberal judicial activism."
A 2008 issue of the Harvard Journal of Law and Public Policy collected essays in tribute to Bork. Authors included Frank H. Easterbrook, George Priest, and Douglas Ginsburg.
Bork is probably best remembered for the contentious Senate confirmation battle that followed his nomination to the US Supreme Court:
The acrimony of that confirmation, which included Sen. Edward Kennedy’s now-infamous description of “Robert Bork’s America” and featured a denunciation by Bill Clinton (a former student of Bork’s from his years of teaching at Yale), has cast a long shadow over subsequent Supreme Court nominations.
"Bork" as a verb
Unfortunately, as a result of that infamous Senate hearing, Robert Bork's legacy most prominently includes the use of his name as a verb. The Oxford English Dictionary has an entry for the verb "to bork" as U.S. political slang, with this definition: "Obstruct (someone, especially a candidate for public office) by systematically defaming or vilifying them."
According to columnist William Safire, the first published use of "bork" as a verb was possibly in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution of August 20, 1987. Safire defines "to bork" by reference "to the way Democrats savaged Ronald Reagan's nominee, the Appeals Court judge Robert H. Bork, the year before."
Perhaps the best-known use of the verb "to bork" occurred in July 1991 at a conference of the National Organization for Women in New York City. Feminist Florynce Kennedy addressed the conference on the importance of defeating the nomination of Clarence Thomas to the U.S. Supreme Court, saying, "We're going to 'bork' him. We're going to kill him politically. Thomas was subsequently confirmed after the most divisive confirmation hearing in Supreme Court history to that point.
Associate Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh used the term during his own contentious Senate confirmation hearing testimony when he stated that "The behavior of several of the Democratic members of this committee at my hearing a few weeks ago was an embarrassment. But at least it was just a good old-fashioned attempt at borking."
- 1971. Neutral Principles and Some First Amendment Problems Indiana Law Journal 47(1). Retrieved October 12, 2020. This paper has been identified as one of the most cited legal articles of all time.
- 1978. The Antitrust Paradox. New York: Free Press. ISBN 978-0029044568
- 1990. The Tempting of America. New York: Free Press. ISBN 978-0684843377
- 1996. Slouching Towards Gomorrah: Modern Liberalism and American Decline. New York: ReganBooks. ISBN 978-0060573119
- 2003. Coercing Virtue: The Worldwide Rule of Judges. Washington, DC: American Enterprise Institute Press. ISBN 978-0844741628
- 2005. A Country I Do Not Recognize: The Legal Assault on American Values. Stanford: Hoover Institution Press. ISBN 978-0817946029
- 2008. A Time to Speak: Selected Writings and Arguments. Wilmington, DE: ISI Books. ISBN 978-1933859682
- 2013. Saving Justice: Watergate, the Saturday Night Massacre, and Other Adventures of a Solicitor General. New York: Encounter Books. ISBN 978-1594036811
- ↑ The Americana Annual, 1988 (Grolier, 1989, ISBN 978-0717202195).
- ↑ Ethan Bronner, Battle for Justice: How the Bork Nomination Shook America (W W Norton & Co Inc, 1989, ISBN 978-0393026900).
- ↑ Ethan Bronner, A Conservative Whose Supreme Court Bid Set the Senate Afire The New York Times, December 20, 2012. Retrieved October 15, 2020.
- ↑ John R. Vile, Great American Judges (ABC-CLIO, 2003, ISBN 978-1576079898).
- ↑ David Beckwith, A Long and Winding Odyssey TIME, September 21, 1987. Retrieved October 15, 2020.
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 Sophia Mason, Judge Robert Bork, Conservative Icon and Catholic Convert, R.I.P. National Catholic Register, December 20, 2012. Retrieved October 15, 2020.
- ↑ Ethan Bronner, A Conservative Whose Supreme Court Bid Set the Senate Afire The New York Times, December 19, 2012. Retrieved October 15, 2020.
- ↑ 8.0 8.1 Al Kamen and Matt Schudel, Judge Robert H. Bork, conservative icon, dies at 85 The Washington Post, December 19, 2012. Retrieved October 15, 2020.
- ↑ Special Counsel Investigation C-SPAN, August 11, 1998. Retrieved October 15, 2020.
- ↑ Robert Bork, Neutral Principles and Some First Amendment Problems Indiana Law Journal 47(1) (1971). Retrieved October 15, 2020.
- ↑ Mark A. Graber, Robert Bork, the original originalist Baltimore Sun, December 24, 2012. Retrieved October 15, 2020.
- ↑ Peter M. Gerhart, The Supreme Court and Antitrust Analysis: The (Near) Triumph of the Chicago School The University of Chicago Faculty Publications 602 (1983): 319–349. Retrieved October 15, 2020.
- ↑ James T. Wooten Nixon's Men: All Work and No Fills The New York Times, March 21, 1973. Retrieved October 16, 2020.
- ↑ 14.0 14.1 Kenneth B. Noble, New Views Emerge of Bork's Role in Watergate Dismissals The New York Times, July 26, 1987. Retrieved October 16, 2020.
- ↑ 15.0 15.1 Bork: Nixon offered next high court vacancy in '73 Associated Press, February 26, 2013. Retrieved October 16, 2020.
- ↑ William Bart Saxbe The United States Department of Justice. Retrieved October 16, 2020.
- ↑ PN891 — Robert H. Bork — The Judiciary Congress.gov. Retrieved October 16, 2020.
- ↑ 741 F. 2d 1388 - Dronenburg v. Zech United States Court of Appeals, District of Columbia Circuit, August 17, 1984. Retrieved October 16, 2020.
- ↑ 746 F. 2d 1579 - Dronenburg v. Zech United States Court of Appeals, District of Columbia Circuit, November 15, 1984. Retrieved October 16, 2020.
- ↑ John H. Buchanan and Arthur J. Kropp, Bork Hearings Showed How Democracy Works; A Very Small Poll Tax The New York Times, October 23, 1987. Retrieved October 16, 2020.
- ↑ Burgess Everett, ACLU spending more than $1M to oppose Kavanaugh Politico, October 1, 2018. Retrieved October 16, 2020.
- ↑ Manuel Miranda, The Original Borking The Wall Street Journal, August 24, 2005. Retrieved October 16, 2020.
- ↑ Norman Vieira and Leonard Gross, Supreme Court Appointments: Judge Bork and the Politicization of Senate Confirmations (Southern Illinois University Press, 1998, ISBN 978-0809322046).
- ↑ 24.0 24.1 A hell of a senator The Economist, August 29, 2009. Retrieved October 16, 2020.
- ↑ 25.0 25.1 25.2 Robert H. Bork, The Tempting of America (Free Press, 1997, ISBN 978-0684843377).
- ↑ Damon Root, Straight Talk Slowdown Reason, September 9, 2008. Retrieved October 16, 2020.
- ↑ Jane Coaston, "Borking," explained: why a failed Supreme Court nomination in 1987 matters Vox, September 27, 2018. Retrieved October 16, 2020.
- ↑ Jeffrey A. Segal, Amicus Curiae Briefs by the Solicitor General during the Warren and Burger Courts: A Research Note Western Political Quarterly 41(1) (March 1, 1988): 135-144. Retrieved October 16, 2020.
- ↑ Senate's Roll-Call On the Bork Vote The New York Times, October 24, 1987. Retrieved October 16, 2020.
- ↑ Linda Greenhouse, Becoming Justice Blackmun (Times Books, 2006, ISBN 978-0805080575).
- ↑ History Timeline Ave Maria School of Law.
- ↑ John Light, Romney’s Divisive Judicial Advisor: Robert Bork Moyers on Democracy, September 14, 2012. Retrieved October 16, 2020.
- ↑ Dennis J. Goldford, The American Constitution and the Debate Over Originalism (Cambridge University Press, 2005, ISBN 978-0521845588).
- ↑ Robert H. Bork, Coercing Virtue: The Worldwide Rule Of Judges (Aei Press, 2003, ISBN 978-0844741628).
- ↑ Bill Mears, Robert Bork, known for contentious Supreme Court nomination, dies at 85 CNN, December 19, 2012. Retrieved October 15, 2020.
- ↑ Mark Memmott, Robert Bork, Who Was Turned Down For Supreme Court, Dies NPR, December 19, 2020. Retrieved October 15, 2020.
- ↑ "bork" Lexico. Retrieved October 14, 2020.
- ↑ William Safire, The Way We Live Now: 5-27-01: On Language; Judge Fights The New York Times Magazine, May 27, 2001. Retrieved October 14, 2020.
- ↑ Steve Barrett, Herman Cain faced with the Clarence Thomas treatment Chattanooga Times Free Press, November 6, 2011. Retrieved October 14, 2020.
- ↑ Kavanaugh hearing: Transcript The Washington Post, September 27, 2018. Retrieved October 14, 2020.
- ↑ Fred R. Shapiro and Michelle Pearse, The Most-Cited Law Review Articles of All Time Michigan Law Review 110(8) (2012): 1483–1520. Retrieved October 12, 2020.
ReferencesISBN links support NWE through referral fees
- Bork, Robert H. The Tempting of America. Free Press, 1997. ISBN 978-0684843377
- Bork, Robert H. Coercing Virtue: The Worldwide Rule Of Judges. Aei Press, 2003. ISBN 978-0844741628
- Bronner, Ethan. Battle for Justice: How the Bork Nomination Shook America. W W Norton & Co Inc, 1989. ISBN 978-0393026900
- Goldford, Dennis J. The American Constitution and the Debate Over Originalism. Cambridge University Press, 2005. ISBN 978-0521845588
- Greenhouse, Linda. Becoming Justice Blackmun. Times Books, 2006. ISBN 978-0805080575
- Staff. The Americana Annual, 1988. Grolier, 1989. ISBN 978-0717202195
- Vieira, Norman, and Leonard Gross. Supreme Court Appointments: Judge Bork and the Politicization of Senate Confirmations. Southern Illinois University Press, 1998. ISBN 978-0809322046
- Vile, John R. Great American Judges. ABC-CLIO, 2003. ISBN 978-1576079898
All links retrieved December 14, 2022.
- Robert Heron Bork Federal Judicial Center
- Congressional Record: Floor Vote on Bork Nomination
- Robert Bork on "Think Tank" PBS
- Bork, Robert H. The End of Democracy? Our Judicial Oligarchy First Things, November, 1996.
- Robert Heron Bork Find-A-Grave
|Solicitor General of the United States
|Succeeded by: Daniel Mortimer Friedman|
|United States Attorney General
|Succeeded by: William B. Saxbe|
Carl E. McGowan
|Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit
|Succeeded by: Clarence Thomas|
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