Brett Kavanaugh picked for Supreme Court by President Trump
- Author: Rogelio Becker Jul 11, 2018,
Jul 11, 2018, 2:20
The senators have stayed mum on whether they're planning to support Trump's nominee, saying they'll wait until after he announces to weigh in. Kimberly Atkins of Boston Herald reports on the "last-minute jockeying by lawmakers and other political stakeholders [that] played right into the reality show-like gamesmanship surrounding President Trump's choice for Supreme Court nominee"; around 4 p.m. this afternoon, Catherine Lucey of Associated Press reported that Trump had "decided on his Supreme Court nominee". Some conservative activists have questioned whether he would rule sufficiently aggressively as a justice. Barry served alongside Hardiman as a federal appeals judge on the 3rd Circuit before stepping down a year ago.
One concern among Democrats is that the choice will give conservatives an unbeatable advantage in the Court for generations to come, since Supreme Court justices serve for life or until they chose to retire.
The nominee, a District of Columbia appeals court judge, is a former adviser to ex-President George W Bush. "Maybe a handful of Democrats will vote for a Trump pick because they have to politically".
Prior to being a judge, the 53-year-old Kavanaugh worked on Ken Starr's investigation into President Bill Clinton, on the legal team for George W. Bush in the Florida recount effort, and in Bush's White House. He also has taken an expansive view of executive power and has favored limits on investigating the president.
Trump defeated Clinton's wife, Hillary Clinton, in the 2016 presidential election and has disparaged both Clintons. Heidi Heitkamp - voted "yes" on the confirmation of his first Supreme Court nominee, Neil Gorsuch.
Like the other eight justices on the court, Kavanaugh has an Ivy League law degree, spending his undergraduate and law school years at Yale. "But this is really about the process and whether or not the corporate right is going to be in charge of picking the Supreme Court in a seat, in a nomination that's likely to tip the scales substantially".
"Thirty years ago, President Reagan nominated Anthony Kennedy to the Supreme Court".
Trump's selection will set up a confirmation showdown in the U.S. Senate, where his fellow Republicans hold a slim 51-49 majority, though with ailing Senator John McCain battling cancer in his home state of Arizona they now can muster only 50 votes.
The White House is hoping the Senate moves quickly to confirm Kavanaugh before the midterm elections in November threaten to unfurl the narrow Republican majority in the chamber and nix the precious leverage the GOP holds over some red state Democrats up for reelection in 2018.
Trump announced his choice with a prime-time address from the White House East Room.
Outside the Supreme Court on Monday night, hundreds of people protested heatedly over Kavanaugh's nomination.
Republicans are eager for conservatives to gain a firm majority on the court. At The National Law Journal, Leon Friedman contends that even if the nominee is confirmed, "that doesn't mean progressives are powerless against such rollbacks" to abortion rights, LGBT rights and affirmative action. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell also received a heads-up from the president. As an appeals court judge, Kethledge authored several notable opinions, including one that upheld the death penalty against a suspect who murdered a woman on federal land and a case in OH that questioned whether private citizens can sue the state for failing to enforce pollution controls. Trump has been struggling with Kavanaugh's association with the Bush family, however, an issue the Post calls the "Bush factor".
The high court handed Trump and his administration a series of victories in its term that ended on the day of Kennedy's retirement, including a major decision upholding the president's travel ban targeting people from several Muslim-majority countries.
Tanden told the conference that controlling the courts was essential to protect the rights of minorities.