Sen. Chuck Schumer Rips Trump's Anti-Abortion 'Litmus Test'

Cheryl Sanders
July 11, 2018

Trump signed Kavanaugh's nomination papers Monday evening in the White House residence.

US Judge Brett Kavanaugh looks on as US President Donald Trump announces him as his nominee to the Supreme Court in the East Room of the White House on July 9, 2018 in Washington, DC.

The Senate must confirm Trump's nominee, who will be backed campaign-style by the White House and conservative legal organizations.

"Judge Kavanaugh has impeccable credentials, unsurpassed qualifications, and a proven commitment to equal justice under the law", Trump said as he introduced his nominee in a prime-time address from the White House, praising him as "one of the finest and sharpest legal minds of our time". Kennedy, a 1988 appointee of President Ronald Reagan, was the most unpredictable.

Kavanaugh has served as a federal appeals court judge who comes as a somewhat more reserved choice among Trump's previously announced short list of nominees. having at time dissented from the Republican party on certain issues, including the Affordable Care Act.

"But there's something within me that says it would be wonderful if he'd appoint Amy Coney Barrett", Hatch said on Fox News. Democrats are expected to draw from the Starr report Kavanaugh helped write to criticize Trump - the report argued a president could be impeached for lying to staff or misleading the public.

But his supporters note his experience and a wide range of legal opinions.

McConnell said he will push for a vote on the nomination before the November midterms. In the Senate, Republicans hold a slim 51-49 advantage. Democratic senators running for re-election in states Trump carried in 2016 will face pressure to back his nominee.

Kethledge, a graduate of the University of Michigan Law School, is a former Kennedy clerk and a former in-house lawyer at Ford Motor Co. Anti-choice right-wingers have also noted that he appears less likely than other top contenders to drastically curtail abortion rights. The liberals' effort probably will focus on moderate GOP senators, such as Maine's Susan Collins and Alaska's Lisa Murkowski, who might be wary of adding a hard-line conservative and risking decades-old precedents such as Roe v. Wade, which legalized abortion in 1973. Kennedy provided a decisive vote in 2015 on an important fair housing case.

Hatch, who is the longest-serving member on the Judiciary Committee and has seen fifteen Senate confirmation fights for Supreme Court justices, said Barrett is an "outstanding" law professor and a "tremendous woman".

The president has spent the days leading up to the decision mulling the pros and cons of the various options with aides and allies.

But with mere hours left to go before his self-imposed deadline, Trump, who has been consulting with family, friends and advisers this weekend while in Bedminster, New Jersey, has reportedly yet to make a final decision.

Trump previous year appointed Neil Gorsuch, who has already become one of the most conservative justices, after Senate Republicans in 2016 refused to consider Democratic former President Barack Obama's nominee Merrick Garland to fill a vacancy left by the death of conservative Justice Antonin Scalia.

They are confident that, if confirmed by the Senate, he will move the high court to the right on abortion, gun rights, affirmative action, religious liberty and environmental protection, among other issues. Some of those victories were made possible by the swing vote of Anthony Kennedy, whose retirement handed Trump a golden ideological opening. He also worked on independent counsel Ken Starr's investigation of President Bill Clinton.

Senate Democrats are sure to press Kavanaugh to explain his views on investigating and impeaching a president based on allegations of lies and a cover-up, something that could prove uncomfortable for Trump given the investigation under way by special counsel Robert S. Mueller III. Kavanaugh has served on the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals since 2006, three years after George W. Bush nominated him to the post.

Trump is largely following the same playbook this time as when he successfully rolled out Gorsuch's nomination in January 2017.

But lawyers who have worked with Kavanaugh are confident he will be boldly conservative.

Other reports by iNewsToday