A U.S. appellate court judge with connections to Kansas and Kansas City is seen as a possible nominee by President Barack Obama to succeed the late Justice Antonin Scalia on the Supreme Court.
Srikanth Srinivasan, who goes by Sri, enjoyed bipartisan support when he was nominated for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia and was confirmed by the Senate 97-0 in 2013.
Srinivasan, 48, was born in India and moved to Lawrence with his family in the late 1960s. Srinivasan attended Lawrence High School.
According to a 2013 profile in USA Today, Srinivasan is “a fanatical University of Kansas basketball fan.”
According to The Hindu, at least three previous Supreme Court justices have served on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, including Scalia.
Prior to being nominated by Obama for that seat, Srinivasan was principal deputy solicitor general of the United States. He argued many cases before the Supreme Court, both under President George W. Bush and Obama.
He served as clerk for former Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor, who was nominated by President Ronald Reagan. O’Connor told The New Yorker at the time of his nomination for the Court of Appeals that Srinivasan was “a wonderful choice.”
Srinivasan has also taught at Harvard Law School. He graduated from Stanford University in 1989 and Stanford Law School and the Stanford Graduate School of Business.
He has been described as a brilliant and open-minded attorney and a decent person.
According to Mother Jones, in his private-sector work Srinivasan defended Exxon and former Enron executive Jeffrey Skilling. He was also on the legal team that represented former Vice President Al Gore during the contested presidential election of 2000.
According to USA Today, Srinivasan won broad bipartisan support during the confirmation process for the appeals court seat. That would be important during an election year in which many Republicans think the Supreme Court seat should be left vacant until the next president takes office.