RELIGION

Justice Alito rallies conservatives in tribute to Scalia

  • Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito speaks at the Federalist Society's National Lawyers Convention in Washington, Thursday, Nov. 17, 2016. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen)

    Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito speaks at the Federalist Society's National Lawyers Convention in Washington, Thursday, Nov. 17, 2016. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen)  (The Associated Press)

  • Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito speaks at the Federalist Society's National Lawyers Convention in Washington, Thursday, Nov. 17, 2016. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen)

    Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito speaks at the Federalist Society's National Lawyers Convention in Washington, Thursday, Nov. 17, 2016. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen)  (The Associated Press)

  • FILE - In this March 13, 2006, file photo, Allison Eid is sworn in as chief justice of the Colorado Supreme Court in Denver. Two Supreme Court justices and nine judges on President-elect Donald Trump’s list of potential high court picks are among more than 1,000 people expected at a gathering of conservative lawyers that has suddenly turned into an impromptu job fair for spots in the new administration. The Federalist Society’s national lawyers’ convention begins Nov. 17 in Washington as a tribute to the late Justice Antonin Scalia, an early supporter of the group and a hero to many of its 40,000 members.  (AP Photo/Linda McConnell, Pool)

    FILE - In this March 13, 2006, file photo, Allison Eid is sworn in as chief justice of the Colorado Supreme Court in Denver. Two Supreme Court justices and nine judges on President-elect Donald Trump’s list of potential high court picks are among more than 1,000 people expected at a gathering of conservative lawyers that has suddenly turned into an impromptu job fair for spots in the new administration. The Federalist Society’s national lawyers’ convention begins Nov. 17 in Washington as a tribute to the late Justice Antonin Scalia, an early supporter of the group and a hero to many of its 40,000 members. (AP Photo/Linda McConnell, Pool)  (The Associated Press)

Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito is issuing a rallying cry to conservatives in the wake of newfound strength following Donald Trump's election.

Alito tells a conference of conservative lawyers, judges and legal thinkers that religious freedom and gun rights are among important issues at stake in the federal courts.

Alito also is paying tribute to longtime colleague Justice Antonin Scalia, who died in February. The two conservative justices were allies in high court battles on hot-button social and political issues.

Alito says at the Federalist Society's national lawyers' conference in Washington that Scalia is sorely missed on the court and that "we are left to ask ourselves WWSD" — what would Scalia do.

Trump will nominate Scalia's successor after Senate Republicans blocked action on President Barack Obama's nomination of Judge Merrick Garland.