Trump nominates Judge Brett Kavanaugh as next Supreme Court justice

Trump has decided his Supreme Court nominee as parties prepare for fight

Judge Brett Kavanaugh was nominated by President Donald Trump for the US Supreme Court.

Mr. Trump is set to announce his selection at 9 p.m.at the White House to replace retiring Justice Anthony M. Kennedy.

The privilege of naming justices to the U.S. Supreme Court - judges whose decisions could affect the lives of Americans for decades - is one of the most consequential choices a president can make. But four Democrats from states Trump won in 2016 voted to confirm Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch past year, leaving the Republicans room for error. "And just like Justice Gorsuch, he excelled as a legal clerk for Justice Kennedy", Trump added, saying his nominee "deserves a swift confirmation and robust bipartisan support".

Judge Kavanaugh now faces what could be a hard fight for confirmation by the US Senate, where Republicans hold only a slim majority.

The candidates under consideration are: Thomas Hardiman, Amy Coney Barrett, Brett Kavanaugh and Raymond Kethledge as finalists.

He also was a key aide to Kenneth Starr during his investigation of President Bill Clinton and worked in the White House during George W. Bush's presidency.

Kavanaugh is likely to be more conservative than Justice Kennedy on a range of social issues. He works for the Washington-based lobbying firm Covington & Burling. He is hoping to replicate his successful announcement of Justice Neil Gorsuch a year ago. Notably, FRC is also classified as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center. The others are Republican targets for the confirmation vote who come from Trump-won states where they face re-election this fall.

The 53-year-old has impeccable academic credentials.

Lee, R-Utah, wouldn't discuss details of the conversation other than to confirm he wasn't Trump's choice but that he would attend the president's prime-time announcement of his pick.

Democratic Sen. Richard Blumenthal of CT, who is on the Senate Judiciary Committee that holds hearings on Supreme Court nominees, told ABC News Chief Anchor George Stephanopoulos on "This Week" that Trump has "outsourced" his decision to the Federalist Society and the Heritage Foundation.

The president and White House officials involved in the process have fielded calls and messages and have been on the receiving end of public pleas and op-eds for or against specific candidates since Kennedy announced on June 27 that he would retire this summer.

Meanwhile, liberal groups are already calling on two moderate Republican senators - Susan Collins of ME and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska - to reject the nominee.

The nominee is expected to meet in coming days with senators at their offices, going door-to-door in get-to-know-you sessions ahead of confirmation hearings. Top Senate Democrat Chuck Schumer earlier on Monday said Trump's nominee should be obligated to make his or her views clear on matters like the Roe ruling.

Democrats who were invited but declined included Sens. The two have supported access to abortion services. Kavanaugh will need to be confirmed by a majority of the Senate before taking his place as one of the nine Supreme Court justices.

"Bob Casey's opposition to President Trump's nominee before he or she has even been named shows he has given up any pretense of being a moderate voice", said NRSC Spokesman Bob Salera in an emailed release.

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