Newly Elected House Speaker Mike Johnson is a Former First Liberty Attorney

October 27, 2023
House Speaker Mike Johnson former First Liberty lawyer | First Liberty Insider

by Jorge Gomez  • 3 min read

This week, Rep. Mike Johnson was elected Speaker of the House. Louisiana elected him to Congress in 2016 and he has served in several leadership positions over the past two years.

In addition to his years in public service, Rep. Johnson has decades of experience in constitutional law. He serves on the House Judiciary Committee and is the chairman of its Subcommittee on the Constitution and Limited Government.

Rep. Johnson’s experience also includes working as a First Liberty attorney.

“We congratulate my friend and former First Liberty attorney on his election as Speaker of the House of Representatives,” said President and CEO Kelly Shackelford. “Mike is a fantastic constitutional attorney and passionate advocate for religious liberty.”

Rep. Johnson devoted nearly 20 years of his career to successfully litigating high profile constitutional law cases in district and appellate courts nationwide. He is widely recognized as a leading defender of religious liberty, free speech and the First Amendment.

He led 13 House and Senate lawmakers in submitting a friend-of-the-court brief at the U.S. Supreme Court in our Faithful Carrier case (Groff v. Dejoy) earlier this year. The brief supported our client and urged the Court to protect the religious liberties of employees as Congress originally intended. They wrote that this was the Court’s opportunity to “correct its error before any more persons of faith, like Gerald Groff, are forced to decide between their job and their God.”

In July, he sponsored and introduced the Free Speech Protection Act to help protect Americans’ First Amendment rights from government censorship. The bill would prohibit executive branch employees and contractors from using their positions to censor and attack free speech. It would also impose mandatory severe penalties for those who do take part in censorship.

A few years ago, Rep. Johnson worked with the Louisiana Legislature on a bill involving school employee participation in student-initiated prayer. He offered his legal expertise to state leaders so they could amend the original language. This helped ensure the bill was constitutional by respecting the rights of students and public employees. Gov. John Bel Edwards signed that bill into law in 2018.

Rep. Johnson earned his law degree from Louisiana State University in 1998, where he was selected as a member of the Moot Court Board and National Moot Court Team and was elected class president and president of the Christian Legal Society. He also earned his undergraduate degree in Business Administration from Louisiana State University.


The Daily Signal: Mike Johnson Becomes Speaker of the House of Representatives

Fox News: Mike Johnson elected House speaker three weeks after Kevin McCarthy’s historic ouster

Wall Street Journal: House Elects Republican Mike Johnson as Speaker

National Review: House Republicans Elect Mike Johnson Speaker, Ending Weeks of Uncertainty

The Daily Wire: House Elects Mike Johnson As Speaker

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