Ex-Clinton adviser: Trump aiming for 'right-wing takeover' of the courts

Leah Millis  Reuters

Besides McGahn, he has the support of some Republicans who admire his record as a lawyer working with independent counsel Ken Starr in the investigation of President Bill Clinton and later in the George W. Bush White House as well as his conservative record as a judge.

With customary fanfare, Trump unveiled his choice to replace retiring Justice Anthony Kennedy on prime-time TV.

President Donald Trump has nominated Brett Kavanaugh to join the US Supreme Court, setting the stage for a dramatic confirmation battle over a stalwart conservative who could shape the direction of the court for decades to come.

Trump is said to have apparently lost interest in Kethledge.

Trump called Kavanaugh "one of the finest and sharpest legal minds of our time", saying he is "considered a judge's judge and a true thought leader among his peers".

The Senate must confirm Trump's nominee, who will be backed campaign-style by the White House and conservative legal organizations. The ads, costing a total of $1.4 million to run, will feature biographical information about the nominee and will be aimed at red state Democrats, including newly elected Sen.

While activists and progressive groups are targeting moderate Republican senators who support abortion rights like Susan Collins of ME and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, urging them to reject any Trump nominee who is hostile to Roe v. Wade, a handful of Democrats will be key in deciding whether the president gets his pick confirmed to the high court, because of the razor-thin partisan divide in the Senate. At the top of that list is abortion.

More than the other potential nominees, Hardiman has a strong record in favor of gun rights. Kennedy provided a decisive vote in 2015 on an important fair housing case.

One Democrat up for re-election in a state Trump won in the 2016 election has already announced that he will oppose the Supreme Court pick ― regardless of the president's choice. Sen.

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Kavanaugh is Trump's second high court pick after Justice Neil Gorsuch.

The president has spent the days leading up to the decision mulling the pros and cons of the various options with aides and allies.

"Bob Casey is so blinded by partisanship that he is opposing a nominee for the Supreme Court before the pick is announced".

The 53-year-old Kavanaugh is a longtime fixture of the Republican establishment.

Trump tweeted later Sunday that he was looking forward to the announcement and said an "exceptional person will be chosen!"

Democrats are certain to press Mr Trump's latest nominee on the landmark 1973 Roe v Wade ruling that legalised abortion nationwide. She then taught at Notre Dame Law from 2002 until 2017. Over the past year, Justice Gorsuch has embodied the most sacred principles of the court, making impartial decisions based upon the Constitution.

The nominee, a District of Columbia appeals court judge, is a former adviser to ex-President George W Bush. Many preferred one of the candidates who had worked outside Washington, despite their less sterling resumes.

But it is Kavanaugh who has been the focus of much of the lobbying, both for and against him.

The choice could be made all the more hard for Casey if Trump nominates Thomas Hardiman, now serving as a judge on the 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals which covers part of Pennsylvania, and who was first appointed to serve in U.S. District Court in Pittsburgh in 2003.

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