Science

Trump's Supreme Court search begins, with youth a key factor

Trump's Supreme Court search begins, with youth a key factor”

By nominating a solidly conservative justice to replace Kennedy, who was known as a "swing vote" and a decider in many key cases, Trump and the Senate will be able to swing the ideological balance of the court to the right, a move that will likely satisfy his base in a crucial midterm election year. Trump says as many as seven candidates may be interviewed.

Speaking en route his golf property in Bedminster, New Jersey, Trump said he would not ask candidates their position on Roe v. Wade. He responded, "That's not a question I'll be asking".

At a rally in front of the court Thursday, speaker after speaker pointed to abortion as a way to rally opposition to the eventual nominee, who Trump has said will come from among 25 people he previously identified as candidates.

"It's a great group of intellectual talent", Trump said.

Kennedy's news that he'll leave the court next month immediately activated a network of White House aides, congressional allies and outside advocates, all set for their second Supreme Court confirmation fight in two years.

His nominee will need to be confirmed by the Senate where the president's Republican Party holds a narrow majority.

A onetime supporter of abortion rights, Trump attracted support from social conservatives during the presidential campaign in large part because of his strong opposition to abortion.

When Trump ran for president in 2016, he pledged to appoint "pro-life" justices to the Supreme Court, while his running mate, now-vice president Mike Pence, said that he hoped to see Roe v. Wade end up on the "ash heap of history".

"I've got it down to about five", Trump said, including two women.

This week, five more candidates were added to Trump's list.

Falwell added: "In the '70s, I don't know how many states had abortion illegal before Roe v. Wade, but it won't be near as many this time".

Chief Justice John Roberts is the Supreme Court's new man in the middle. Both were being closely vetted, Politico said, citing a person familiar with White House thinking on the nomination. Also of interest are Amul Thapar, who serves on the federal appeals court in Cincinnati, and Brett Kavanaugh, a former clerk for Kennedy who serves on the federal appeals court in Washington, D.C.

He said Democratic senators running for reelection in conservative states, like West Virginia and in, face a "lose-lose" scenario: risk angering their base voters by supporting Trump's pick, or vote no and harm their chances among the Republicans and moderates they still need to win.

In September, Trump issued a proclamation restricting certain nationals of Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria, Yemen, North Korea and Venezuela from obtaining visas to travel to the U.S. It was the third version of the Trump administration's attempt to restrict entry to the U.S. after two executive orders earlier in 2017.

Flake told The Arizona Republic he would make a determination on voting for Trump's nominee after reviewing the pick. Republicans control the chamber but only by a slim majority, making the views of moderates, including some Democrats, important.

"We're not looking at this as a strictly partisan vote", said Marc Short, the White House director of legislative affairs.

"I just think you have to go through a process", he said.

Manchin might be Trump's closest ally across the aisle - the president even considered him for a Cabinet job - and Manchin left open the possibility of supporting Trump for re-election in 2020.

This week's video from CNN's Jake Tapper and FactCheck.org explains Democratic Rep. Keith Ellison's tweet that the Supreme Court "ratified Donald Trump's "total and complete shutdown" of Muslims entry into the United States".



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