Cruz Pitches Mike Lee as Justice Kennedy’s Replacement on Supreme Court

06 July, 2018, 05:19 | Author: Clarence Schmidt
  • Report Sen. Mike Lee no longer in serious consideration for the Supreme Court opening

Trump has said he intends to name a nominee on Monday following the announcement by Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy that he intends to retire at the end of the month.

The shortlist is widely rumored to include U.S. Appeals Court Judge Amy Coney Barrett of IN; U.S. Appeals Court Judge Thomas Hardiman of Pennsylvania; U.S. Circuit Judge Brett Kavanaugh of Maryland, who formerly clerked for Kennedy; U.S. Circuit Judge Raymond Kethledge of MI; and U.S. Appeals Court Judge Amul Thapar of Kentucky, according to the Washington Post. Mike Lee, R-Utah - and openly lobbying against another one of Trump's top contenders.

The President teased his potential pick on social media before the Fourth of July holiday, saying "I interviewed 4 very impressive people yesterday".

"Lee safeguards Trump's Supreme Court legacy for all time, because there is not a single soul out there who can doubt that he would remain true to the convictions he has fought for his entire life", Cruz said.

"Perhaps the most consequential issues at stake in this Supreme Court vacancy are affordable health care and a woman's freedom to make the most sensitive medical decisions about her body", Schumer wrote in a New York Times op-ed earlier this week.

Lee is a known conservative commodity who has all the credentials. "Mike Lee. I think he would be extraordinary". "We're going to hit a home run", said Trump.


For the right, the blueprint is the successful Senate confirmation of the conservative justice Neil Gorsuch, whom Trump picked in 2017 to succeed the late Antonin Scalia.

Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., has told colleagues he may not vote for Kavanaugh if the judge is nominated, citing Kavanaugh's role during the Bush administration on cases involving executive privilege and the disclosure of documents to Congress, said a person familiar with Paul's conversations who spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity.

The fact that Lee is a Senator means that he could, possibly, be voting on his own confirmation as a Justice, if he were to become the nominee.

"One thing that many people say is he does not appear to be part of the Washington swamp, and he is not one of the East Coast elites", said University of Richmond law professor Carl Tobias.

Hardiman has served on the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals since 2007, after being appointed by President George W. Bush and winning unanimous approval in the Senate. Former House speaker and Trump ally Newt Gingrich tweeted Monday: "Judge Amy Coney Barrett would make an outstanding Supreme Court Justice".

The New York Democrat reportedly warned Mr. Trump not to nominate a justice who would overturn Roe v. Wade, the 1973 case that granted women the right to an abortion.

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