|Chief Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit|
|Assumed office |
February 11, 2020
|Preceded by||Merrick Garland|
|Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit|
|Assumed office |
May 24, 2013
|Appointed by||Barack Obama|
|Preceded by||A. Raymond Randolph|
|Principal Deputy Solicitor General of the United States|
August 26, 2011 – May 24, 2013
|Preceded by||Neal Katyal|
|Succeeded by||Ian Heath Gershengorn|
Padmanabhan Srikanth Srinivasan
February 23, 1967
|Education||Stanford University (BA, JD-MBA)|
Padmanabhan Srikanth "Sri" Srinivasan (/ /; born February 23, 1967) is an American jurist and attorney serving as the Chief United States Circuit Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. The United States Senate confirmed Srinivasan by a vote of 97–0 on May 23, 2013. Before his confirmation, Srinivasan served as Principal Deputy Solicitor General of the United States and has argued 25 cases before the United States Supreme Court. He has also lectured at Harvard Law School.
Early life and education
Srinivasan was born in Chandigarh, India to Tamil Iyengar parents. His father, Thirunankovil Padmanabhan Srinivasan, was from Mela Thiruvenkatanathapuram, a village near Tirunelveli, Tamil Nadu. Srinivasan's family first moved to the United States in the late 1960s when his father had a Fulbright fellowship at the University of California, Berkeley. The family briefly returned to India before finally immigrating to Lawrence, Kansas in the early 1970s when Srinivasan was four years old. His father was a professor of mathematics at the University of Kansas, and his mother, Saroja, taught at the Kansas City Art Institute and later worked at the University of Kansas computer science department. Srinivasan graduated from Lawrence High School in Lawrence, where he played basketball, sharing the court with future NBA star Danny Manning.
After law school, Srinivasan worked as a law clerk for United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit Judge J. Harvie Wilkinson III and then was a clerk for United States Supreme Court Associate Justice Sandra Day O'Connor.
After his clerkships, Srinivasan worked for the law firm O'Melveny & Myers and then joined the office of the United States Solicitor General, where he worked from 2002 until 2007. He rejoined O'Melveny & Myers in 2007 as a partner, and was the firm's hiring partner for its Washington, D.C. office. While at the firm, he represented ExxonMobil for accusations of human rights abuses by hired military personnel at an Indonesian gas plant. In 2010, he represented former Enron executive Jeffrey Skilling in his appeal before the U.S. Supreme Court, which challenged the "honest services" fraud statute and also that Skilling's trial was never moved from Houston. The Supreme Court ruled in favor of Skilling on the "honest services" fraud statute, but rejected the trial location argument.
Srinivasan also was a lecturer at Harvard Law School, where he co-taught a course on Supreme Court and appellate advocacy. In 2005 he received the Office of the Secretary of Defense Award for Excellence from the United States Department of Defense.
On August 26, 2011, Srinivasan was appointed to replace Neal Katyal as Principal Deputy Solicitor General of the United States. As of May 2013, Srinivasan had argued 25 cases before the U.S. Supreme Court. Earlier in his career, he also performed pro bono work for presidential candidate Al Gore during the aftermath of the 2000 presidential election.
He left the Solicitor General's office on May 24, 2013, upon a 97–0 appointment to the Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit.
Federal judicial service
In March 2010, National Review blogger Edward Whelan wrote that the Obama administration had been considering nominating Srinivasan to one of two vacancies on the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit and that the idea of nominating Srinivasan had run into opposition from some Obama supporters because of Srinivasan's work in the U.S. Solicitor General's office during the Bush administration, and union animosity to Srinivasan's corporate clients in private practice.
In June 2012, Obama nominated Srinivasan to the seat on the D.C. Circuit. On January 2, 2013, his nomination was returned to the President, due to the sine die adjournment of the Senate; the next day he was renominated to the same office.
His Senate confirmation hearing on April 10, 2013 was uneventful. His nomination was reported to the floor of the Senate on May 16, 2013, by a unanimous vote of 18 ayes to 0 nays. A final vote on his nomination took place on May 23, 2013, where he was confirmed 97–0. He took the oath of office before Chief Judge Merrick Garland in June. At his formal swearing-in ceremony in September, administered by retired Supreme Court justice Sandra Day O'Connor, he took the oath on the Hindu holy book Bhagavad Gita and became the first federal appellate judge of South Asian descent. He became Chief Judge on February 11, 2020.
In Sierra Club v. Jewell, 764 F. 3d 1 (2014), Srinivasan authored the majority opinion in the D.C. Circuit's split decision holding that environmental groups seeking to protect the site of the historic Battle of Blair Mountain possessed Article III standing to challenge the removal of the site from the National Register of Historic Places in federal court.
Srinivasan authored the D.C. Circuit's decision in Pom Wonderful v. FTC, 777 F.3d 478 (2015), which upheld FTC regulations that require health-related advertising claims be supported by clinical studies while simultaneously trimming the number of studies required on First Amendment grounds.
In Home Care Association of America v. Weil, 799 F. 3d 1084 (2015), Srinivasan authored the D.C. Circuit's decision reinstating, under Chevron deference, regulations that guarantee overtime and minimum wage protection to home health care workers, citing "dramatic transformation" of the home care industry over the past forty years as reason for the change.
Srinivasan authored the D.C. Circuit's decision in Hodge v. Talkin, 799 F. 3d 1145 (2015), which upheld a federal law prohibiting demonstrations in the U.S. Supreme Court Building's plaza as justified by the Supreme Court's interest in not giving the appearance of being influenced by public opinion and as consistent with nonpublic forum viewpoint-neutral restrictions, where demonstrations could proceed on nearby public sidewalks.
In Jarkesy v. SEC, 803 F. 3d 9 (2015), Srinivasan authored the D.C. Circuit's decision holding that the securities laws under the Dodd–Frank Act provide an exclusive avenue for judicial review that plaintiffs may not bypass by filing suit in district court.
Srinivasan authored the D.C. Circuit's decision in Simon v. Republic of Hungary, Slip Op. (2016), holding that Article 27 of the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act merely creates a floor on compensation for Holocaust survivors because the text of the 1947 peace treaty between Hungary and the Allies does not bar claims outside of the treaty and because the Allies "lacked the power to eliminate (or waive) the claims of" Hungary's own citizens against their government.
Supreme Court consideration
In April 2013, Mother Jones suggested that Srinivasan ultimately might be nominated by President Obama for the Supreme Court of the United States; during the same month, Jeffrey Toobin also opined that should he be confirmed for the D.C. Circuit, he would be Obama's next nominee to the Supreme Court. If nominated he would be the first Indian American, first Asian American and first Hindu candidate for the Supreme Court.
Following the death of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia on February 13, 2016, Srinivasan was again widely speculated to be among the most likely contenders to be appointed to fill the seat, prior to the nomination of Merrick Garland. After Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell threatened to refuse to consider any Obama appointee to fill the seat in an election year, it was thought that Srinivasan, who was confirmed 97–0 in 2013, would be politically difficult to block, had he been nominated.
- "Srinivasan, Srikanth - Federal Judicial Center". www.fjc.gov.
- Huisman, Matthew (August 26, 2011). "Srinivasan Leaving O'Melveny to Become Deputy Solicitor General". The Blog of Legal Times. Retrieved August 27, 2011.
- President Obama Nominates Two to Serve on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. Office of the White House Press Secretary. June 11, 2012.
- "Sri Srinivasan: potential supreme court nominee could break GOP blockade". The Guardian. The Guardian.
- Goldstein, Amy (March 11, 2016). "Will the U.S. Supreme Court get its first Asian American justice?". Washington Post. Retrieved March 16, 2016.
- Eilperin, Juliet (May 23, 2013). "Sri Srinivasan confirmed to judicial seat in unanimous Senate vote". The Washington Post. Retrieved May 27, 2013.
- Mauro, Tony (February 26, 2010). "Srinivasan's Star Rising at the Supreme Court". The Blog of Legal Times. Retrieved August 27, 2011.
- "Professionals: Sri Srinivasan". O'Melveny & Myers. Archived from the original on September 5, 2012. Retrieved May 27, 2013.
- "Greens wary of Sri Srinivasan's fossil fuel past". Politico. February 17, 2016.
- Streib, Lauren (February 26, 2010). "Next Up For The Unstoppable Sri Srinivasan: Jeff Skilling Defense". Business Insider. Retrieved May 27, 2013.
- "Supreme Court Limits Scope of 'Honest Services' Statute – Skilling v. United States". The National Law Review. September 8, 2010. Archived from the original on July 11, 2015. Retrieved February 14, 2016.
- "Indian American Judge Makes U.S. History" The Times of India (May 24, 2013).
- Serwer, Adam (April 10, 2013). "Who Is Sri Srinivasan, Obama's "Supreme Court Nominee in Waiting"?". Mother Jones. Retrieved February 13, 2016.
- KJ McElrath (February 17, 2016). "Supreme Court Front-Runner Sri Srinivasan: Progressive Judge Or Just Another Corporate Shill?". The Ring of Fire Network.
- Ed Whelan (March 15, 2010). "National Review Online".
- "President Obama Nominates Two to Serve on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit". The White House. June 11, 2012. Retrieved May 27, 2013.
- "President Obama Re-nominates Thirty-Three to Federal Judgeships". The White House. January 3, 2013. Retrieved May 27, 2013.
- Peters, Jeremy W. (April 10, 2013). "Easy Hearing for Obama's Choice for Court". The New York Times.
- "On the Nomination (Confirmation Srikanth Srinivasan, of Virginia, to be U.S. Circuit Judge for D.C. Circuit)". United States Senate. May 23, 2013. Retrieved May 27, 2013.
- Wolf, Richard (May 23, 2013). "Sri Srinivasan: Supreme Court justice in the making?". USA Today. Retrieved May 27, 2013.
- "D.C. Circuit Judge Srinivasan Sworn In". The BLT: The Blog of Legal Times.
- "Sri Srinivasan sworn in as judge of top US court". The Hindu. September 27, 2013. Retrieved February 14, 2016.
- Marimow, Ann (September 26, 2013). "New judge Sri Srinivasan joins U.S. Court of Appeals in D.C." Washington Post. Retrieved February 14, 2016.
- "PRESS RELEASE" (PDF). United States Courts for the D.C. Circuit. Retrieved February 12, 2020.
- Sierra Club v. Jewell, 764 F. 3d 1 (D.C. Circuit 2014)
- Rosenberg, Mica (August 26, 2014). "U.S. court rules for groups defending historic site from coal mining". Reuters. Retrieved February 17, 2016.
- Pom Wonderful v. FTC, 777 F.3d 478 (D.C. Circuit 2015)
- Doyle, Michael (January 30, 2015). "Court upholds deception claims against POM Wonderful". McClatchy. Retrieved February 16, 2016.
- Home Care Association of America v. Weil, 799 F. 3d 1084 (D.C. Circuit 2015)
- Hananel, Sam (August 21, 2015). "Appeals court reinstates wage rules for home care workers". Newshour. PBS. Associated Press. Retrieved February 14, 2016.
- Hodge v. Talkin, 799 F. 3d 1145 (D.C. Circuit 2015)
- Barnes, Robert (August 28, 2015). "Protesters have no free-speech rights on Supreme Court's front porch". Washington Post. Retrieved February 14, 2016.
- Jarkesy v. SEC, 803 F. 3d 9 (D.C. Circuit 2015)
- Feldman, Noah (October 2, 2015). "SEC's New Court Powers Aren't Going Away". Bloomberg. Retrieved February 17, 2016.
- Simon v. Republic of Hungary, Slip Op. (D.C. Circuit 2016)
- Loomis, Alex (February 5, 2016). "Simon v. Republic of Hungary—Summary in Brief". Lawfare. Retrieved February 14, 2016.
- Serwer, Adam (April 10, 2013). "Who Is Sri Srinivasan, Obama's "Supreme Court Nominee in Waiting"?". Mother Jones. Retrieved March 27, 2014.
- Toobin, Jeffrey (April 9, 2013). "Sri Srinivasan, the Supreme Court Nominee-in-Waiting". The New Yorker. Retrieved May 27, 2013.
- Goldstein, Amy (March 11, 2016). "Will the U.S. Supreme Court get its first Asian American justice?". Washington Post. Retrieved March 14, 2016.
- Potential Supreme Court Nominees The New York Times, February 14, 2016.
- "Who Are The Possible Candidates To Fill Scalia's Seat?" NPR, February 14, 2016.
- Gerstein, Josh (February 14, 2016). "Obama's Supreme Court short list". Politico. Retrieved February 21, 2016.
- MacGillis, Alec (February 19, 2016). "Why is Mitch McConnell Picking This Fight?". New York Times. Retrieved February 21, 2016.
- Zimbo.com In This Photo: Principal Deputy Solicitor General of the United States Srikanth Srinivasan (R) and his children, twins Vikram and Maya Srinivasan, 11, talk ahead of Srikanth's confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Capitol Hill April 10, 2013 in Washington, DC. U.S. President Barack Obama has nominated Sirnivasan to be circuit judge for the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. A significant number of Supreme Court appointees were previously D.C. Circuit Court judges. (April 9, 2013 - Source: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images North America); accessed February 14, 2016
- "For First Time Indian American Sworn In Judge Of Second Most Powerful US Court". RTT News. Retrieved February 14, 2016.
- Sri Srinivasan at the Biographical Directory of Federal Judges, a public domain publication of the Federal Judicial Center.
- Srikanth Srinivasan at Ballotpedia
- Appearances on C-SPAN
| Principal Deputy Solicitor General of the United States
Ian Heath Gershengorn
Arthur Raymond Randolph
| Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit
| Chief Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit|