Edward Whelan is the President of the Ethics and Public Policy Center. He directs EPPC’s program on The Constitution, the Courts, and the Culture. His areas of expertise include constitutional law and the judicial confirmation process. As a contributor to National Review Online’s Bench Memos blog, he has been a leading commentator on nominations to the Supreme Court and the lower courts and on issues of constitutional law. He has written essays and op-eds for leading newspapers (including the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, and the Washington Post), opinion journals, and academic symposia and law reviews.
In 2011, the National Law Journal named Mr. Whelan among its “Champions and Visionaries” in the practice of law in D.C. The National Law Journal praised Mr. Whelan for “pioneer[ing] the field of legal blogging” and for offering “commentary [that] infuses national debates over judicial nominees, Supreme Court ethics and appellate court decisions—so much so that, when a Senate Republican cites outside research into the record of an Obama nominee, it’s more likely than not that the handiwork is Whelan’s.”
Mr. Whelan, a lawyer and a former law clerk to Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, has served in positions of responsibility in all three branches of the federal government. From just before the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, until joining EPPC in 2004, Mr. Whelan was the Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General for the Office of Legal Counsel in the U.S. Department of Justice. In that capacity, he advised the White House Counsel’s Office, the Attorney General and other senior DOJ officials, and Departments and agencies throughout the executive branch on difficult and sensitive legal questions. Mr. Whelan previously served on Capitol Hill as General Counsel to the U.S. Senate Committee on the Judiciary. In addition to clerking for Justice Scalia, he was a law clerk to Judge J. Clifford Wallace of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.
In 1981 Mr. Whelan graduated with honors from Harvard College and was inducted into Phi Beta Kappa. He received his J.D. magna cum laude in 1985 from Harvard Law School, where he was a member of the Board of Editors of the Harvard Law Review.
Review of The Rise and Decline of American Religious Freedom
Published in First Things (August/September 2014 issue) on July 8, 2014
Judge Sykes Versus Judge Rovner on the HHS Mandate
Published in National Review Online on November 19, 2013
Non-Discrimination Principles Versus Civil Liberties
Published in United States Commission on Civil Rights on March 1, 2013
EPPC’s Supreme Court Amicus Brief in Proposition 8 Marriage Case
Published in United States Supreme Court on January 29, 2013
The HHS Contraception Mandate vs. the Religious Freedom Restoration Act
Published in Notre Dame Law Review on November 2, 2012
Richard A. Posner’s Badly Confused Attack on Scalia/Garner
Published in National Review Online on September 7, 2012
Exposing the Schlock Social Science on Gay Parenting
Published in National Review Online on June 11, 2012
The Most Egregious Performance Ever by a Federal District Judge
Published in National Review Online on August 13, 2010
Ed Whelan's Response to New York Times's Public Editor
Published in Bench Memos on January 22, 2008