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President Donald Trump released a list of 20 additional potential U.S. Supreme Court nominees, which includes Senators Tom Cotton, Ted Cruz, and Josh Hawley.
The announcement replicates a similar release in the run-up to the 2016 presidential election. The president underscored that the original list is still operative, specifically mentioning Judges Bill Pryor, Amy Coney Barrett, and Thomas Hardiman.
Had a third vacancy emerged in Trump’s first term, it was widely speculated that Barrett would have been the choice.
Trump noted on Wednesday that in the event of a vacancy or vacancies on the high court in his second term (which seems likely, based on demographics and health), he would select someone in the mold of conservative Justices Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas, and Samuel Alito.
In addition to the trio of Capitol Hill lawmakers, Trump’s new list includes mostly sitting federal judges.
- Judge Bridget Bade, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.
- Daniel Cameron, Kentucky attorney general (who spoke at the RNC convention)
- Paul Clement, former U.S. solicitor general
- Judge Stuart Kyle Duncan, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
- Steven Engel, DOJ assistant attorney general
- Noel Francisco, former U.S. solicitor general
- Judge James Ho, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
- Judge Gregory Katsas, U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit
- Judge Barbara Lagoa, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit.
- Christopher Landau, U.S. ambassador to Mexico
- Justice Carlos Muñiz, Florida Supreme Court
- Judge Martha Pacold, U.S. District/Northern District of Illinois
- Judge Peter Phipps, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit
- Judge Sarah Pitlyk, U.S. District Court/Eastern District of Missouri
- Judge Allison Jones Rushing, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
- Kate Todd, deputy counsel to President Trump
- Judge Lawrence VanDyke, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
President Trump warned that when it comes to judges, elections have consequences.
“If [the radical left] is granted a majority on the Supreme Court, it will fundamentally transform America without a single vote of Congress. Radical justices will erase the Second Amendment, silence political speech, and require taxpayers to fund extreme late-term abortion.
“They will give unelected bureaucrats the power to destroy millions of American jobs. They will remove the words ‘under God’ from the pledge of allegiance. They will unilaterally declare the death penalty unconstitutional even for the most depraved mass murderers. They will erase national borders, cripple police departments, and grant new protections to anarchists, rioters, violent criminals, and terrorists.”
In addition to the unprecedented hundreds of lower court judges, President Trump elevated to judges (Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh) to the Supreme Court in his first term, and he says that could be anywhere from 1-4 vacancies on the nine-member high court over the next four years.
If Trump wins reelection, he could cement a conservative majority on the court possibly for the next 40 or 50 years. Currently, there is a narrow, 5-4 conservative majority on the court, but Chief Justice John Roberts often votes with the liberal bloc.
Trump discussed the new list with Hannity during a phone interview on Wednesday night. The president told the FNC host that rival Joe Biden is unlikely to promulgate a list of his own because the Democrat wants to conceal from America the kind of far-left, radical judges that he would nominate.
All three GOP senators expressed gratitude to the president for the honor of being named to the SCOTUS list, but Hawley was the only one to rule it out.
I’m honored that President Trump asked me to consider serving on the Supreme Court and I’m grateful for his confidence. I will always heed the call of service to our nation. https://t.co/fD10iVx952
— Tom Cotton (@SenTomCotton) September 9, 2020
It's humbling and an immense honor to be considered for #SCOTUS.
— Senator Ted Cruz (@SenTedCruz) September 9, 2020
I appreciate the President’s confidence in listing me as a potential Supreme Court nominee. But as I told the President, Missourians elected me to fight for them in the Senate, and I have no interest in the high court. I look forward to confirming constitutional conservatives
— Josh Hawley (@HawleyMO) September 9, 2020
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