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06 July 2018, 06:46 | Bernice Figueroa
The Supreme Court in October 2015
"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. Coney Barrett, who sits on the US Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit in Chicago, is just 46 and would give Trump an opportunity to leave a long-lasting imprint on the court. He'sinterviewed a number of those candidates in recent days and sources said he's looking at three in particular: Judges Barrett, Kavanaugh and Kethledge. The president said he would meet with Vice President Mike Pence over the weekend and then announce his choice at the White House at 9 p.m. on Monday, July 9. He conducted interviews on Monday and Tuesday. Another official also said Judge Amul Thapar remains under consideration and left open the possibility the president could always expand the list. "She is not perceived as a Washington insider and that can be very powerful", said Ms.
However, Sarah E. Pitlyk, a former law clerk to Kavanaugh who now serves as special counsel for the Thomas More Society, wrote in a National Review column that on "the vital issues of protecting religious liberty and enforcing restrictions on abortion, no court-of-appeals judge in the nation has a stronger, more consistent record than Judge Brett Kavanaugh".
Mr. Trump has said he'll choose his nominee from a list of 25 candidates vetted by conservative groups.
Some conservatives have pointed to Kethledge as a potential justice in the mold of Neil Gorsuch, Trump's first Supreme Court nominee past year.
The nomination would mean President Donald Trump is keeping one of his most touted campaign promises.
Conservative activists and interest groups are lining up behind their favorites as President Trump nears a decision on his Supreme Court choice - though they say they'll generally be happy with whoever emerges from Mr. Trump's short list.
It's important to maintain that caveat, because President Trump has not made a final decision, and it could change. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) also spoke to the president about the merits and drawbacks of each nominee, including Kavanaugh.
Kennedy, a conservative who sometimes sided with the court's liberals on divisive social issues such as gay rights and abortion, was a key figure on the court. Kethledge, of MI, is a judge on the Cincinnati-based 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.
A graduate of Georgetown University Law Center, Hardiman would be the only justice who didn't attend an Ivy League law school, if confirmed.
During her confirmation hearing for the 7th Circuit, Sen. McConnell declined to consider Garland, saying that Scalia's replacement should be left to the next president.
Separately, Coney Barrett has earned a sharp rebuke from the left, amid concerns by abortion-rights groups that she would be likely to overturn Roe v. Wade.
She was confirmed 55 to 43 by the Senate, and three Democrats voted for her - Joe Manchin of West Virginia, Tim Kaine of Virginia and Joe Donnelly of Indiana. After her clerkship, Barrett worked in private practice and moved on to become a law professor at the Notre Dame Law School.
Collins said Trump told her at the meeting last week that he would not ask the candidates about whether they would vote to overturn Roe v. Wade.
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