He was a strong defender of the powers of the executive branch, believing presidential power should be paramount in many areas. While in college, he was a champion collegiate debater in Georgetown's Philodemic Society and a critically praised thespian.
Scalia served on the Court for nearly thirty years, during which time he espoused a conservative jurisprudence and ideology, advocating textualism in statutory interpretation and originalism in constitutional interpretation. In 1953, Scalia enrolled at Georgetown University, where he graduated valedictorian and summa cum laude in 1957 with a Bachelor of Arts in history.Feeling that this might well be Reagan's last opportunity to pick a Supreme Court justice, the president and his advisers chose Scalia over Bork. Reagan wanted to appoint the first Italian-American justice.When Senate Judiciary Committee hearings on Scalia's nomination opened in August 1986, he faced a committee that had just argued divisively over the Rehnquist nomination.Eight justices joined in the majority opinion written by Blackmun, upholding the Guidelines as constitutional.In 1996, Congress passed the Line Item Veto Act, which allowed the president to cancel items from an appropriations bill (a bill authorizing spending) once passed into law. The matter rapidly reached the Supreme Court, which struck down the law as violating the Presentment Clause of the Constitution, which governs what the president is permitted to do with a bill once it has passed both houses of Congress.