Friday, 14 December, 2018

Trump's Supreme Court pick would solidify court's conservative bent, experts say

US President Donald Trump congratulates his Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh US President Donald Trump congratulates his Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh
Jeannette Daniel | 12 July, 2018, 10:04

A simple majority is required.

"There is no one in America more qualified for this position, or more deserving", the president said.

Muslim American civil rights groups also expressed concern that Kavanaugh's nomination will embolden the Trump administration to carry on with its hostility toward Muslims and immigrants.

"Justice Kavanaugh is prepared to carry forth Trump's agenda", she added, and "gut the Affordable Care Act", referring to Obama's healthcare law, widely known as Obamacare. Kavanaugh, a 53-year-old appeals judge, is revered in conservative circles for his perceived loyalty to the text of the Constitution.

Later he was part of Bush's legal team working on the 2000 Florida recount, which resulted in Bush's winning the presidency.

As a member of Ken Starr's staff, Kavanaugh pushed for an aggressive prosecution of President Clinton.

"I understand people won't like him because of the way he's likely to rule on certain issues".

Meanwhile, Senate Democrats were already pushing a coordinated message against Kavanaugh as an unacceptable choice on both policy and political grounds.

After much hemming and hawing, the two Republican senators most apt to withhold their support, Maine's Susan Collins and Alaska's Lisa Murkowski, will ultimately back the nominee, saying they are comfortable with his record and temperament.

The Senator from Iowa chairs the Senate Judiciary Committee, which he said will take a few days or weeks to review Kavanaugh. With Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., receiving cancer treatment in his home state, Republicans need all 50 Republicans, plus Pence as a tiebreaker, to confirm Kavanaugh, assuming no Democrats join them.

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Like many judges, he's often dodged on Roe v. Wade, the landmark 1973 case affirming the right to privacy and access to abortion.

FILE - Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., meets with Brett Kavanaugh, right, then-nominee for the D.C. Circuit Court, on Capitol Hill, May 2, 2006. Special counsel Robert Mueller, of course, is now investigating potential collusion between Russian Federation and the Trump campaign during the 2016 election.

"Low-Energy Jeb" was how Trump mocked President George W. Bush's brother during the 2016 campaign.

The perch of a Supreme Court seat can provide additional sources of income.

Knowing full well what the Democrats attack points would be, Kavanaugh talked about the importance of women in his life and the lessons he learned on the importance of equality from his mother, as she, his father, his wife and his two young daughters looked on. He described how his mother went on to earn a law degree, become a prosecutor and a judge.

Grassley said the Senate could vote on the nominee by later September or early October.

A "thorough" review of Kavanaugh's paper trail is exactly what anxious Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky, about Kavanaugh, given the appeals court judge has decades of political and legal opinions in which senators on the fence could probably find something not to like.

However, his selection will start a major confirmation battle in the U.S. Senate. Republicans hold a narrow 51-49 majority.

Justice Kennedy was often a member of five-to-four majority decisions on the high court. Those included a number of disputed cases, including ones supporting same-sex marriage and a woman's right to an abortion. "The networks of lawyers who focus on these issues, and who can influence the nomination process, are often based in Washington, DC", Orin Kerr, a University of Southern California law professor, wrote in an email. "That sounds less like a Supreme Court justice and more like a waiter at a Ruby Tuesday's". "It wasn't that long ago when it was common for presidents to nominate judges with no prior federal court experience or judicial experience at all". "I will carefully review and consider the record and qualifications of Judge Brett Kavanaugh".

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