President TrumpDonald TrumpCheney says a lot of GOP lawmakers have privately encouraged her fight against Trump Republicans criticizing Afghan refugees face risks DeVos says 'principles have been overtaken by personalities' in GOP MORE on Friday pledged that his forthcoming Supreme Court pick will "reject judicial activism" and avoid making policy from the bench.
In his weekly video address to the nation, Trump vowed that his nominee will not "rewrite the law, reinvent the Constitution."
"Judges are not supposed to rewrite the law, reinvent the Constitution, or substitute their own opinions for the will of the people expressed through their laws," Trump said. "We reject judicial activism and policymaking from the bench."
"In choosing a new justice, I will select someone with impeccable credentials, great intellect, unbiased judgement, and deep reverence for the laws and Constitution of the United States," he added.
Trump's comments on judicial activism come as Democrats and other critics warn that the president's replacement for retiring Justice Anthony Kennedy could be a nominee who ends up being hostile to abortion rights and could possibly rule in favor of overturning the Roe v. Wade decision from 1973 that legalized abortion.
The president made abortion and appointing anti-abortion justices a signature campaign promise in 2016. The following year he addressed the annual March for Life rally in Washington, D.C., via video.
Despite those promises, Trump has shied away from asking potential nominees about their stance on Roe v. Wade, telling Fox Business Network that he would "probably not" ask Kennedy's possible successor about the issue.
"They're all saying, 'Don't do that, you shouldn't do that,' but I'm putting conservative people on and I'm very proud of Neil Gorsuch, who has been outstanding," Trump said in an interview. "His opinions are so well-written and so brilliant."
"I'm going to do something, but I don't think I'll be so specific," Trump added.