Trump names Brett Kavanaugh as nominee for next supreme court justice

Cheryl Sanders
July 10, 2018

But McConnell said Monday that senators should give Kavanaugh "the fairness, respect, and seriousness that a Supreme Court nomination ought to command".

Trump tweeted on Sunday that: "An exceptional person will be chosen!"

But his 12-year history of decisions on a federal appeals court could be his biggest liability, according to The Washington Post's Aaron Blake. Bush first selected him for the D.C. court in 2003, but the nomination languished and lapsed.

President Donald Trump's top contenders for the vacancy appear to be federal appeals judges Amy Coney Barrett, Thomas Hardiman, Brett Kavanaugh and Raymond Kethledge.

Leo said Hardiman of Pennsylvania and Kethledge of MI are "a little bit less known by conservatives".

Trump's nom was unveiled in the White House's East Room, picking from his short list provided by right-wing Federalist Society.

Like Trump's first nominee to the Supreme Court, Neil Gorsuch, Kavanaugh clerked for Kennedy.

Kavanaugh, 53, is said to be supported by White House Counsel Don McGahn, who's supervising the search.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell says Hardiman and Kethledge may be the easiest to confirm because their records aren't as politically charged. Kavanaugh in 2009 changed his tune on the Starr probe, arguing that presidents should be free from civil lawsuits, criminal prosecutions and investigations while in office.

Conservative critics said Kavanaugh's dissent provided the roadmap that helped persuade U.S. Chief Justice John Roberts to cast a crucial vote in upholding the law when it reached the Supreme Court in 2012.

That kind of thinking could prove helpful to Trump, who has been dogged by accusations of sexual harassment, as well as possible obstruction of justice in the Russian Federation probe now being led by special counsel Robert Mueller. He was confirmed just 66 days after he was nominated. Given Trump's known habit of leaning on family ties and valuing loyalty above all, that could be decisive.

And she recently made it through the confirmation process, with the Senate approving her nomination to be an appeals court judge in October.

"One Republican senator can decide the fate of any Supreme Court nominee", said Sen.

"I honestly think that if it's one of the four, I think that they will be relatively easily confirmed", Cornyn said. We could see hearings as soon as next month. Both support a woman's right to have an abortion and will be looking for assurances that the nominee would not overturn the Roe v Wade decision establishing abortion rights. They're eyeing 85-year-old Ruth Bader Ginsburg as the most likely to retire next. Bob Casey, D- Pa., has already expressed his disapproval of Trump's decision.

News reported on Sunday night that Kavanaugh and Hardiman are getting the most attention in the decision-making process.

The looming midterm elections in November also could be a factor.

What is nearly certain - and those across the political spectrum agree - is that Kavanaugh's selection will spark a major confirmation battle in the U.S. Senate, where Republicans hold a narrow 51-49 majority and opposition Democrats say they will fight to prevent the high court from swinging further to the right. He's a Yale-educated appellate court judge for the U.S. Court of Appeals District of Columbia Circuit and clerked for retiring Justice Kennedy.

MCCAMMON: At the same time, as I said, you know, Barrett's very popular with religious conservatives.

Speaking at the White House, Kavanaugh pledged to preserve the Constitution and said that "a judge must be independent and must interpret the law, not make the law".

-With assistance from Greg Stohr, Laura Litvan and Ben Brody.

Other reports by iNewsToday