Robert Clive Jones
|Robert Clive Jones|
|Chief Judge of the United States District Court for the District of Nevada|
2011 – January 1, 2014
|Preceded by||Roger L. Hunt|
|Succeeded by||Gloria Navarro|
|Judge of the United States District Court for the District of Nevada|
November 30, 2003
|Appointed by||George W. Bush|
|Preceded by||David W. Hagen|
|Born||1947 (age 67–68)
Las Vegas, Nevada, Nevada, U.S.
|Alma mater||Brigham Young University (B.S.)
UCLA School of Law (J.D.)
Robert Clive Jones (born 1947) is a federal District Court Judge of the United States District Court for the District of Nevada. He served as Chief Judge from 2011-2014.
Jones was born in Las Vegas. He graduated from Brigham Young University where he majored in English, accounting and economics in 1971. He then became a CPA. Jones attended UCLA Law School where he was an editor of the UCLA Law Review.
He served in the U.S. Army National Guard from 1971-1972, and then in the U.S. Air National Guard from 1972-1977. In 1975, Jones was a law clerk to Hon. J. Clifford Wallace of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. From 1976-1982, he was in private practice. Jones served as a bankruptcy judge from 1983-1999. His wife is Michele Bunker.
Jones was unanimously confirmed by the U.S. Senate as a U.S. District Court judge for the District of Nevada in December 2003 after being nominated by President George W. Bush.
In August 2012, Jones held that Nevada's election law giving voters the ability to select "None of the above" was unconstitutional. He was overruled by a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit on September 4, 2012. One member of that panel, Judge Stephen Reinhardt, criticized Jones' handling of the case: "His dilatory tactics appear to serve no purpose other than to seek to prevent the state from taking an appeal of his decision before it prints the ballots.... Such arrogance and assumption of power by one individual is not acceptable in our judicial system."
On November 29, 2012, in the case of Sevcik v. Sandoval, Jones ruled that Nevada's denial of marriage rights to same-sex couples does not violate the Equal Protection Clause of the U.S. Constitution. Jones stated that,"a meaningful percentage of heterosexual persons would cease to value the civil institution as highly as they previously had and hence enter into it less frequently." He also wrote that adoption is "not an alternative means of creating children, but rather a social backstop for when traditional biological families fail." On October 7, 2014, a unanimous panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit reversed Jones's ruling and directed him to promptly enjoin the state of Nevada from "preventing otherwise qualified same-sex couples from marrying." However, instead of issuing the order, Jones recused himself on October 8, 2014. 
In August of 2013, Jones was the only Chief Judge from each of the 50 states that did not sign a letter to the leaders of the United States Congress urging them to avoid further sequestration related budget cuts. The letter explained that further cuts would have a "devastating and long-lasting impact" on federal courts.
- Cannon, Mark W. (November 6, 2004). "LDS federal judges raising the bar". Church News. Retrieved November 30, 2012.
- "Jones, Robert Clive". Federal Judicial Center, 2015.
- "Nevadans to keep "none of the above" ballot option". CBS News. September 5, 2012. Retrieved November 30, 2012.
- Geidner, Chris (November 29, 2012). "Federal Judge Rules Nevada Can Ban Same-Sex Couples From Marriage". BuzzFeed Politics. Retrieved November 30, 2012.
- "Sevcik v. Sandoval" (PDF). October 7, 2014.
- Sherman, Mark (August 16, 2013). "Judges urge Congress to avoid more sequestration cuts". The Washington Post.
- Robert Clive Jones at the Biographical Directory of Federal Judges, a public domain publication of the Federal Judicial Center.