But he had made his final decision, according to a person with knowledge of the president's thinking who was not authorized to speak publicly. "What matters is not a judge's political views but whether they can set aside those views to do what the law and Constitution require", Trump said.
Senators are trying to frame the debate before Trump's 9 p.m. announcement. "A judge must be independent, must interpret the law, not make the law, must interpret statutes as written, and must interpret the Constitution as written, informed by history and tradition and precedent", Kavanaugh said.
Schumer says the administration's action highlights the stakes for senators. Barrett is a former clerk for Justice Antonin Scalia. The president could be indicted in the Russian Federation probe, some law experts say, while the Department of Justice is of the opinion that cannot happen.
The White House said Trump has interviewed four potential picks, all of whom are federal appeals courtjudges.
Kyl, a former member of Republican leadership, served on the Senate Judiciary Committee before retiring from the Senate in January 2013. He is now a lobbyist in the Washington headquarters of Covington & Burling.
While activists and progressive groups are targeting moderate Republican senators who support abortion rights like Susan Collins of ME and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, urging them to reject any Trump nominee who is hostile to Roe v. Wade, a handful of Democrats will be key in deciding whether the president gets his pick confirmed to the high court, because of the razor-thin partisan divide in the Senate. He said all four judges on Mr. Trump's shortlist are highly qualified to fill the vacancy on the highest court. He cites involvement of the conservative Heritage Foundation think tank in drafting the list. All three are Republican targets for the confirmation vote: They all supported Gorsuch and come from Trump-won states where they face re-election this fall. The race is not expected to be competitive.
Leo said Hardiman of Pennsylvania and Kethledge of MI are "a little bit less known by conservatives". Kennedy sometimes joined the liberal justices on key rulings on divisive social issues like abortion and gay rights, a practice his replacement may not duplicate.
The report also noted that the Supreme Court - which recently affirmed freedom of speech in saying pro-life crisis pregnancy centers can not be forced to promote abortion and freedom of religion in a decision on behalf of Masterpiece Cakeshop owner Jack Phillips in the same-sex marriage fight - now is earning its highest approval ratings in several years. After Gorsuch was announced, there was suspicion that Hardiman made the trip to serve as a kind of decoy. Joe Donnelly of Indiana, Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota, Doug Jones of Alabama, Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Dianne Feinstein of California.
The campaign will include a biographical ad about the nominee. The president spent the days leading up to his announcement discussing the pros and cons of various contenders with aides and allies. The new ad brings their total investment to $2.4 million. He was a runner-up past year when Trump nominated Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court.
"The conclusion one draws is that the dogma lives loudly within you".
Departing his New Jersey golf club on Sunday afternoon, Trumptoldreporters he was still making up his mind.
A third finalist, Amy Comey Barrett, was seen at her home in IN just a few hours before Trump was set to unveil his nominee at a White House ceremony.
President Donald Trump has decided on his nominee to the Supreme Court after spending Monday morning working the phones primarily seeking input about two judges who were said to be the finalists, Brett M. Kavanaugh and Thomas M. Hardiman, people familiar with the discussions said.
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