Back in February, during one of the Republican debates, Donald Trump was pretty specific about the kind of jurists he’d like to see added to the Supreme Court in the wake of Justice Antonin Scalia’s passing: Judges Diane Sykes and Bill Pryor, both of whom are far-right Bush/Cheney appointees. Yesterday, however, the presumptive GOP presidential nominee went much further.
Presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump on Wednesday released the names of 11 potential U.S. Supreme Court nominees that he would choose from to replace the late Justice Antonin Scalia.
The list, first reported by the Associated Press, includes judges from around the country: Steven Colloton of Iowa, Allison Eid of Colorado and Raymond Gruender of Missouri, Thomas Hardiman of Pennsylvania, Raymond Kethledge of Michigan, Joan Larsen of Michigan, Thomas Lee of Utah, William Pryor of Alabama, David Stras of Minnesota, Diane Sykes of Wisconsin and Don Willett of Texas.
Trump’s list, released in a written press statement yesterday afternoon, will reportedly be a “guide”: the Republican didn’t say he would definitely choose from these 11 when nominating Supreme Court justices, but these are the kind of folks he’d consider.
And for the right, that’s probably reassuring. The future of the judiciary is one of the top considerations for many conservative leaders, and it’s been a leading cause for concern among far-right Trump skeptics. Yesterday’s announcement was no doubt intended to assuage their fears, making it abundantly clear that Trump has every intention of moving the judiciary to the right by releasing a list of 11 very conservative jurists.
Of course, at the same time, the developments should also serve as a reminder to the left: those hoping that Trump might lean towards moderation when nominating judges are obviously mistaken. Trump expects to name as many as five justices to the Supreme Court, and the consequences would be felt by Americans for at least a generation, if not more.
But as much of the political world considers Trump’s list and its potential impact, there’s one name in particular that’s worth paying attention to.
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