U.S. Sen. Doug Jones said it's"premature to say how he'll vote on President Donald Trump's nominee to the U.S. Supreme Court
He was a runner-up a year ago when Trump nominated Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court. "It's about what country the United States of America is going to chart as its course in the future on this Supreme Court".
Kennedy's exit has afforded Trump the opportunity to replace the frequent swing vote on the court with a reliable conservative judge and influence the judiciary for decades.
President Trump is reportedly considering four potential nominees. Hannity, along with Rudy Giuliani and others, had lunch with Trump at his golf club in Bedminster, New Jersey on Sunday, Politico reported. 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.
Last week I was told Trump had essentially narrowed the list down to two: Kavanaugh and 6th Circuit Judge Raymond Kethledge.
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Barrett, 46, has the least judicial experience of the four, with only eight months as a judge after spending most of her career as a conservative legal scholar. Kavanaugh, a judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, is also a former Kennedy clerk. Trump is expected to pressure recalcitrant Senate Democrats into supporting his nominee by holding rallies in their states.
But Valentino says a late addition to the final four, Circuit Court Judge Thomas Hardiman comes off as more moderate on some issues and could have the edge.
Presidents weigh all sorts of considerations in deciding on a Supreme Court nominee, often beginning with the big question: Will the choice be confirmed by the Senate? A former White House aide under Bush who previously worked for Kenneth Starr, the independent counsel who investigated Democratic former President Bill Clinton in the 1990s, he faced a long confirmation battle when Bush nominated him to his current post.
There are no set dates for when the confirmation hearings will begin. The New York Times reports she says she would like to see the scope of abortion rights changed. Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., the majority leader, has tried to warn the president through gentle nudging that Hardiman and Kethledge would be the safest choices for confirmation.
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Republican Sen. John Kennedy of Louisiana said he was bracing for a tough confirmation battle as Democrats focus on abortion.
Any of the candidates on Trump's short list would probably move the court to the right.
In a wider sense, his nominee will also represent a triumph for conservatism and the organized effort to promote vetted conservative judges that offered McConnell a pipeline of candidates for lower courts and now is reaching the ultimate prize - a solid Supreme Court majority.
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