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Chad A. Readler
Chad A. Readler.jpg
Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit
Assumed office
March 7, 2019
Appointed byDonald Trump
Preceded byDeborah L. Cook
Acting United States Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Division
In office
December 11, 2017 – September 4, 2018
PresidentDonald Trump
Preceded byHimself
Succeeded byJody Hunt
In office
January 30, 2017 – November 16, 2017
PresidentDonald Trump
Preceded byBenjamin C. Mizer (acting)
Succeeded byHimself
Personal details
Born (1972-08-23) August 23, 1972 (age 48)
Pontiac, Michigan, U.S.
EducationUniversity of Michigan (BA, JD)

Chad Andrew Readler (born August 23, 1972)[1] is a United States Circuit Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit and former Principal Deputy and former Acting Assistant Attorney General for the United States Department of Justice Civil Division.


Readler (pronounced: RAYD-ler) earned his Bachelor of Arts from the University of Michigan and his Juris Doctor, cum laude, from the University of Michigan Law School, where he served on the editorial board of the University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform. After graduating from law school, he served as a law clerk for Judge Alan Eugene Norris of the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit.

Readler began his legal career in the Columbus, Ohio, office of Jones Day, including spending ten years as a partner in the Issues and Appeals Group.[2] While at Jones Day, Readler represented the R. J. Reynolds Tobacco Company.[3] He also successfully argued before the Supreme Court of the United States in McQuiggin v. Perkins on behalf of a pro bono client claiming actual innocence. His other pro bono representations include representing capital defendants before the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit and the Supreme Court of Ohio, representing defendants sentenced to life in prison before the Sixth Circuit, and challenging dismissals of claims filed by pro se litigants.[2]

Prior to becoming a judge, Readler was Principal Deputy United States Assistant Attorney General for the United States Department of Justice Civil Division, a position he held beginning on January 30, 2017. Readler previously served as Acting United States Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Division from January 2017 to September 2018. In that role, Readler led and supervised the Department's largest litigating division and actively briefed and argued several cases on behalf of the United States in federal courts across the country.[2]

Federal judicial service

On June 7, 2018, President Trump announced his intent to nominate Readler to serve as a United States Circuit Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit.[2] On June 18, 2018, his nomination was sent to the Senate. President Trump nominated Readler to the seat being vacated by Judge Deborah L. Cook, who previously announced her intention to take senior status on a date to be determined.[4] In June 2018, U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown said he did not plan to return a blue slip for Readler's nomination, while U.S. Senator Rob Portman said he planned to support Readler's nomination.[5] On October 10, 2018, a hearing on his nomination was held before the Senate Judiciary Committee.[6]

During his confirmation proceedings, Democrats criticized Readler for having supported a Republican lawsuit aimed at dismantling the Affordable Care Act, including its protections for individuals with pre-existing conditions.[7][8]

On January 3, 2019, his nomination was returned to the President under Rule XXXI, Paragraph 6 of the United States Senate. He was renominated on January 23, 2019.[9] On February 7, 2019, his nomination was reported out of committee by a 12–10 vote.[10] On March 5, 2019, the Senate voted to invoke cloture on the nomination by a vote of 53–45.[11] On March 6, 2019, his nomination was confirmed by a vote of 52–47.[12] He received his judicial commission on March 7, 2019.


He is a member of the Federalist Society.[13]


Readler was involved in some of the most high-profile and controversial cases in the Trump Administration. For example, Readler defended the Trump administration's attempt to impose a citizenship question on the 2020 Census, based on Readler's allegation that the Department of Justice had requested the Department of Commerce to add the question.[14] The Supreme Court later determined that false, "ruling that the justification that the government offered at the time for including the citizenship question was just a pretext."[15].

Previously, Readler represented R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company in challenging a Buffalo, New York restriction prohibiting tobacco ads from appearing within 1,000 feet of schools, playgrounds, and day-care centers.[16] Readler argued that Reynolds had a First Amendment right to advertise tobacco products within 1,000 feet of schools, playgrounds, and day-care centers.[17]

After Readler joined the Department of Justice, he took pro-tobacco stances in his capacity as Acting Assistant Attorney General of the Civil Division. [18]For example, despite representing the United States, Readler opposed an FDA rule that would have regulated tobacco products. [19] Readler was formally asked to recuse himself, consistent with the practice of prior attorneys who had represented tobacco companies in private practice before joining the federal government, such as Theodore Olsen and Paul Clement. [20] Readler refused to recuse, and subsequently supported other challenges to government regulations of tobacco.[21]

See also


  1. ^ United States Senate Committee on the Judiciary: Questionnaire for Judicial Nominees: Chad Andrew Readler
  2. ^ a b c d "President Donald J. Trump Announces Fifteenth Wave of Judicial Nominees, Fourteenth Wave of United States Attorney Nominees, and Ninth Wave of United States Marshal Nominees". June 7, 2018. Retrieved June 7, 2018 – via National Archives. This article incorporates text from this source, which is in the public domain.
  3. ^ "FDA delays enforcement of stricter standards for e-cigarette, cigar industry". Washington Post. Retrieved October 10, 2018.
  4. ^ "Seventeen Nominations and One Withdrawal Sent to the Senate Today", White House, June 18, 2018
  5. ^ Heisig, Eric (June 7, 2018). "Sen. Sherrod Brown says he will not support Trump's nominees for Ohio-based appeals court". Retrieved June 20, 2018.
  6. ^ United States Senate Committee on the Judiciary: Nominations for October 10, 2018
  7. ^ Hulse, Carl (March 6, 2019). "Senate Confirms Trump Nominee Who as Justice Official Fought the Affordable Care Act". The New York Times. Retrieved March 7, 2019.
  8. ^ Lesniewski, Niels (March 6, 2019). "Democrats vow Judge Chad Readler will be 2020 issue". Retrieved March 7, 2019.
  9. ^ "Nominations Sent to the Senate". Retrieved January 23, 2019 – via National Archives.
  10. ^ Results of Executive Business Meeting – February 7, 2019, Senate Judiciary Committee
  11. ^ Roll Call Vote 116th Congress - 1st Session United States Senate Vote Summary: Vote Number 36, United States Senate, March 5, 2019
  12. ^ Roll Call Vote 116th Congress - 1st Session United States Senate Vote Summary: Vote Number 37, United States Senate, March 6, 2019
  13. ^ "Chad A. Readler". Retrieved July 1, 2018.
  14. ^
  15. ^
  16. ^
  17. ^
  18. ^
  19. ^
  20. ^
  21. ^

External links

Legal offices
Preceded by
Benjamin C. Mizer
United States Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Division

Succeeded by
Jody Hunt
Preceded by
Deborah L. Cook
Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit
This page was last edited on 19 March 2021, at 05:03
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