"The four people - they're excellent, every one", Trump told reporters yesterday en route to the White House from his Bedminster, N.J., estate, where playmaking by lawmakers, conservative advocates and others reached a fever pitch over the weekend.
Liberal horror and conservative delight about the implications of the pick have crystalized into a debate about the newly constituted court's potential to overturn Roe v Wade, the landmark 1973 decision that upheld a legal right to an abortion. He was a runner-up previous year when Trump nominated Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court.
Barrett, confirmed to the Chicago-based 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on October 31, has faced opposition by abortion rights groups because she has called Roe v. Wade an erroneous decision.
The President is predicting he'll announce his pick for the Supreme Court Monday night at 9 p.m. Let's say it's the four people. But the situation appeared to remain fluid. Kavanaugh, a judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, is also a former Kennedy clerk.
"There's nobody that President Trump could nominate from a conservative vent that will get many Democratic votes".
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Barrett - a longtime Notre Dame Law School professor who became a federal appeals judge last fall - excited social conservatives with her testimony when she was questioned about her Roman Catholic faith in her nomination hearings a year ago. Barrett is a former University of Notre Dame law professor, (and a graduate of the school; Kavanaugh meanwhile received his undergrad and law degrees from Yale). Previous lobbying efforts by McConnell - including a push for fellow Kentuckian 6th Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Amul Thapar, who would have been the court's first Asian-American nominee - have failed. 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".
"I'm getting very close to making a final decision", Trump said, adding that he would "probably" have a decision by Sunday evening or Monday morning. On Saturday, he tweeted that a "Big decision" was coming soon.
Republican Sens. Lindsey Graham of SC and Roy Blunt of Missouri said Sunday that they believe any of the top four contenders could get confirmed by the GOP-majority Senate. Both are conservative jurists in the mold of Trump's previous Supreme Court pick, Gorsuch.
"They're good judges", Blunt said on NBC's "Meet the Press".
The president and White House officials involved in the process have fielded calls and messages and have been on the receiving end of public pleas and op-eds for or against specific candidates since Kennedy announced on June 27 that he would retire this summer. "I don't think my role is a rubber stamp for the President, but it's also not an automatic, knee-jerk no either", Jones said. "And I expect we will do that on sort of a normal timetable, a couple of months".