Donald Trump still pondering Supreme Court pick as big reveal nears

A 'Supreme' show: Trump savors big reveal for court choice

A Yale graduate and devout Catholic who went to a Jesuit high school, he once clerked for Justice Kennedy, the man he would replace.

US President Donald Trump has nominated Brett Kavanaugh for the Supreme Court, setting the stage for a bruising confirmation battle. He also was a key aide to Kenneth Starr during Starr's investigation of President Bill Clinton, worked on behalf of George W. Bush's campaign during the election recount in 2000 and served in the Bush White House. "I'll interpret the law as written".

It will be one of the most consequential decisions President Trump makes during his time in the White House, and he will announce it tonight. "During his more than 12 years on the bench, Judge Kavanaugh has authored hundreds of opinions on issues ranging from national security to agency rule-making to constitutional rights", Hatch said in a prepared statement. Kennedy has been a justice for the country's highest court since being appointed by Ronald Reagan in 1988.

Republican Sens. Lindsey Graham of SC and Roy Blunt of Missouri said Sunday that they believe any of the top four contenders could get confirmed by the GOP-majority Senate.

Kennedy was long a swing vote on the 9-member court, and Trump's choice - his second opportunity in 18 months to fill a Supreme Court seat - stands to dramatically affect many aspects of American life, from abortion to voting rights to immigration. Luther Strange, cutting the GOP's Senate majority to 51-49. Susan Collins said she wouldn't support a nominee hostile to the court's precedent in Roe v. Wade - and the conservative Barrett has expressed a willingness to reverse precedent she sees as wrongly decided.

Senator John Cornyn, R-Texas, told CBS News' Nancy Cordes that any of the four candidates would be great justices, and he expects the eventual nominee to sail through their confirmation hearing and vote.

Joe Donnelly of Indiana, Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota and Joe Manchin of West Virginia will be prime targets. And I've been here with Supreme Court justices from the time of President Ford straight on to President Trump.

Senator Lindsey Graham said President Donald Trump would not receive Democrat support for his Supreme Court pick, even if he nominated George Washington.

Legal experts say his work on the D.C. Circuit bolsters his conservative credentials, but it also gives Democrats plenty of fodder on controversial topics in the looming confirmation fight such as a woman's access to abortion, gun rights, consumer protections and environmental regulations.

This story is breaking and will be updated.

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Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.

During her nomination hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee, Barrett was questioned about her religious beliefs. Sen.

Trump instead has "gone to two far hard-right groups, the Heritage Foundation and the Federalist Society - asked them, not the Senate, to advise and consent on a Supreme Court nomination", Schumer railed.

Those who discussed the president's decision, and spoke on the condition of anonymity, did not disclose the name of the president's selection.

"Not being a politician, I think people wanted to hear what some of my choices may be, and it was pretty effective", Trump said of the list, on the day Kennedy's retirement was announced.

Democrats have little leverage as they try to halt the nomination - though the court's rightward lurch could stoke liberal turnout in the midterm elections in which the House of Representatives is in play.

Outside the Supreme Court on Monday night, hundreds of people protested heatedly over Kavanaugh's nomination.

A senior White House official says Trump called Kavanaugh on Sunday evening to inform him that he was his choice to be nominated to the Supreme Court.

Savoring the suspense, Trump has sought to keep people guessing in the final hours, hoping to replicate his successful announcement of Justice Neil Gorsuch past year.

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