Governor Sam Brownback says Caleb Stegall is “one of the most qualified people” to ever be named to the Kansas Supreme Court.
Brownback named his former aide to the high court on Friday and called him “brilliant.”
He put the 42-year-old on the Court of Appeals last year after he spent three years as the governor’s chief counsel.
Stegall was one of 13 people who applied for the seat Justice Nancy Moritz gave up to take a seat on the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. The appointment does not require state Senate confirmation.
An online magazine Stegall edited in 2005 encouraged “forcible resistance” to state and federal court orders to save the life of a brain-damaged Florida woman, though he later said it only advocated civil disobedience.
In a 2008 online newspaper chat, he called the U.S. Supreme Court’s 1973 ruling legalizing abortion “weak.”