Pres. Trump: 'Very Close' To Making Final Supreme Court Pick

Desiree Burns
July 10, 2018

"He has put a litmus test on the supreme court nominee" over abortion, she said.

Trump's short list continued to vacillate in the hours leading up to tonight's prime-time finale, where his choice to replace retiring Justice Anthony Kennedy will be revealed.

Trump's Monday night nomination will be his second since he entered the White House.

One Democrat up for re-election in a state Trump won in the 2016 election has already announced that he will oppose the Supreme Court pick ― regardless of the president's choice. Sen. On Sunday he was back to citing "the four people".

The president made the remarks before boarding Air Force One in New Jersey Sunday, saying he is considering four candidates and can't go wrong with any of them.

The front-runners are conservative federal circuit court judges Amy Coney Barrett, Thomas Hardiman, Brett Kavanaugh, and Raymond Kethledge, according to people who are assisting the president with the nomination process or are familiar with the process.

The president is said to be leaning toward Hardiman.

All of the candidates are relatively young and could help shape legal doctrine on the high court for decades to come. Add Supreme Court as an interest to stay up to date on the latest Supreme Court news, video, and analysis from ABC News. "I'm glad he's on the list - are all winners", Sen. Liberal advocacy groups are challenging Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., to keep the Democrats united. "I am thinking about this person".

Democrats have little leverage as they try to halt the nomination - though the court's rightward lurch could stoke liberal turnout in the midterm elections in which the House of Representatives is in play. He is an evangelical Christian whose book Lead Yourself First uses President Dwight Eisenhower, primatologist Jane Goodall, Winston Churchill, Martin Luther King Jr. and others as examples of "leaders who have used solitude to function more effectively".

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Barrett, who is 46, has less of a judicial record to review, having just been nominated to the appeals court by Trump past year.

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. She was a law clerk for Scalia.

During her nomination hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee, Barrett was questioned about her religious beliefs. Sen. More recently, she's written that abiding by precedent is "not a hard-and-fast rule" in the Supreme Court's constitutional cases. Barrett has said she believes life begins at conception.

Meanwhile, the conservative Judicial Crisis Network said it will launch a $1.4 million ad buy in four states - Alabama, Indiana, North Dakota, and West Virginia - introducing the nominee in a favorable light.

Hardiman, 52, attended Georgetown Law.

What McConnell reportedly said about Trump's... He's been pushed into the spotlight in recent days, and the president reportedly likes his personal story (Hardiman was the first in his family to attend university, and drove a cab to pay his way through).

Republicans are eager for conservatives to gain a firm majority on the court.

Trump's pick will cement a 5-4 majority on the court for conservatives who could quite possibly dominate for a generation and, combined with his aggressive efforts to appoint judges to other federal courts across the country, ensure that the imprint of his contentious presidency will endure long after he has left office.

Current position: Barrett was confirmed by the Senate to a lifetime appointment on the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals this past October. He had previously worked with independent counsel Kenneth Starr in the investigation of President Bill Clinton, and was involved in the Florida presidential vote recount in 2000.

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