Trump’s Supreme Court list: President reveals names of 20 more people he’d consider nominating
President Trump on Wednesday announced a list of 20 more people he would consider appointing to the Supreme Court, including three sitting Republican senators.
Speaking from the Diplomatic Reception room of the White House, the president read off a list of names including Daniel Cameron, the Kentucky attorney general who recently spoke at the Republican Convention, as well as Sens. Ted Cruz of Texas, Tom Cotton of Arkansas and Josh Hawley of Missouri.
The latest iteration of the list is the first update since November 2017 and comes less than two months before the presidential election. The list was first released in the later stages of the 2016 Republican presidential primary after then-rival Ted Cruz had dropped out of the race. It was aimed at reassuring conservatives suspicious of Trump that he would make Supreme Court picks in line with their priorities — the newest version has the same fundamental purpose.
According to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., it worked in 2016.
“Here is a guy who is about to become our nominee who was doing fundraisers for Chuck Schumer four years ago,” McConnell said at The Federalist Society’s 2019 Kentucky Chapters Conference. “So there were a lot of us saying, ‘What are we getting here?’ And the list reassured a whole lot of Republicans, beginning with Republican U.S. senators.”
He added: “Fast forward a little further and by the fall, the single biggest issue that brought nine out of 10 Republican voters home to Donald Trump, just like nine out of 10 voted for Mitt Romney, was the Supreme Court.”
AN INSIDE LOOK AT HOW TRUMP’S SUPREME COURT LIST IS MADE: ‘A TREMENDOUS INVESTMENT OF TIME’
This list is the first one produced without the direct involvement of former White House Counsel Don McGahn, who was the driving force behind the confirmations of Justices Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh. McGahn was involved with Trump’s campaign from the early stages and is seen as one of the most influential people on the Trump administration’s judicial selection process along with Federalist Society Co-Chairman Leonard Leo.
McGahn’s fingerprint is still on the most recent list, however, as Trump, with McGahn’s involvement, nominated dozens of judges in his first term to circuit courts of appeals, which is where most Supreme Court nominees have come from in recent decades.
“President Trump has a great problem to have,” McGahn said in an interview with Fox News earlier this summer. “He has nominated and appointed a slew of excellent jurists to the circuit courts. Thus, he already has a public list: the people he put on the circuit courts.”
The list released Wednesday was kept under wraps right up until it went public, with the group of people involved in formulating it including Leo, current White House Counsel Pat Cipollone and Judicial Crisis Network President Carrie Severino, a former clerk for Justice Clarence Thomas.
Severino told Fox News earlier this summer that she expects Trump’s Supreme Court list to be a major factor in the upcoming election.
“Twenty-one percent of voters said that the Supreme Court was their number one issue. That’s more than a fifth of the voters. So it was hugely significant,” she said.
There was an active vacancy after the death of late Justice Antonin Scalia in 2016, but the next presidential term could be even more significant for Supreme Court nominations.
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Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg is 87; Justice Stephen Breyer is 82; Thomas is 72; and Justice Samuel Alito is 70.
Published at Wed, 09 Sep 2020 20:12:36 +0000