John T. Noonan, well-respected judge on Court of Appeals, dies
Source: San Francisco Chronicle
When President Ronald Reagan nominated John T. Noonan in 1985 to the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco, he chose a man who had gained prominence in the academic and legal worlds as a Catholic scholar and staunch opponent of abortion.
Judge Noonan fulfilled that reputation in more than three decades on the bench, siding with conservatives on issues of abortion and reproduction and writing the first appellate ruling upholding a state’s ban on physician aid in dying. But he proved to be less predictable in other areas, and often sided with moderate or liberal colleagues on issues such as immigration and criminal law.
The announcement of his death on Monday at his Berkeley home, at age 90, drew tributes from across the ideological spectrum.
“He took his religion to heart and turned it to the pursuit of justice,” said Judge Stephen Reinhardt, a leader of the court’s liberal wing.