Trump readies big court reveal as senators dig in for fight

Trump readies big court reveal as senators dig in for fight

If confirmed, Kavanaugh would be the second justice installed by Trump, who nominated Neil Gorsuch to the court shortly after being inaugurated previous year.

Kavanaugh now faces what appears to be another fierce fight for confirmation in the Senate, where Trump's fellow Republicans hold a slim majority. If he is confirmed, it will mark the first time ever that a current or former Supreme Court justice has two former clerks become justices, according to an article by Adam Feldman, who writes a blog about the Supreme Court. The White House says Trump isn't likely to interview any more new candidates. "He's a brilliant jurist with a clear and effective writing style, universally regarded as one of the finest and sharpest legal minds in our time". "Throughout legal circles, he is considered a judge's judge, a true thought leader among his peers. Tonight, it is my honor and privilege to announce that I will nominate Judge Brett Kavanaugh to the United States Supreme Court".

This is Mr Trump's second appointment to the highest court in the land, potentially allowing him to shape the U.S. for a generation after he leaves office.

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. "What matters is not a judge's political views, but whether they can set aside those views to do what the law and the Constitution require", he continued.

After all, that was the gambit that won Trump so many evangelical votes in 2016: He made the unusual move of releasing, before he was even president, a list of judges he would consider for the Supreme Court if elected. That means President Trump should select anyone but Kethledge or Hardiman.

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?

Kavanaugh also offered a nod to the Supreme Court justice he's expected to replace, saying "the framers established that the Constitution is created to secure the blessings of liberty".

All of the candidates are relatively young and could help shape legal doctrine on the high court for decades to come.

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Associate Justice Neil Gorsuch joins other justices of the U.S. Supreme Court for an official group portrait at the Supreme Court Building in Washington.

Trump is scheduled to announce his decision at 9 p.m. Monday, and it is unclear how much of the last-minute maneuvering is geared to keeping the president's choice a secret. Republicans have a razor-thin Senate majority. Jon Kyl, R-Ariz., would guide the nominee through the confirmation process, including preparing for meetings with senators.

Democrats are certain to press Mr Trump's latest nominee on the landmark 1973 Roe v Wade ruling that legalised abortion nationwide.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell was upbeat the night after Justice Anthony Kennedy announced he was retiring from the Supreme Court.

Democrats' hopes are pinned on two Republican senators, Susan Collins of ME and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, who both oppose any nominee who threatens the landmark Roe v. Wade ruling recognizing abortion as a constitutional right.

"The far right has total control of the Congress, they have total control of the administration, now they want total control of the judiciary, and I'm just not going to allow that to happen and I'm going to keep fighting against it", he said.

Democrats have sounded the alarm that Trump could shift the ideological balance of the court and thereby place women's reproductive rights, health care and gay rights at risk.

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