Renewed focus on Trump’s Supreme Court list after Ginsburg’s death
President Trump’s list of potential Supreme Court nominees, released earlier this month, is being reassessed after the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg on Friday left a vacancy that Trump and Senate Republicans could attempt to fill with a conservative replacement.
If successful, such a move could transform the Supreme Court from a fragile 5-4 conservative majority into a commanding 6-3 conservative supermajority with implications for everything from abortion rights to the Second Amendment.
Trump’s original Supreme Court list, released in 2017, includes several individuals viewed as top contenders for the seat, including Amy Coney Barrett, a Trump appointee to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit; Thomas Hardiman, a George W. Bush appointee to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit; and Amul Thapar, a Trump appointee to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit.
Sens. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.), Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and Josh Hawley (R-Mo.), as well as Noel Francisco, who departed as solicitor general in June, are among the names on Trump’s additional list of candidates for the Supreme Court that was released Sept. 9. Hawley, however, swiftly tweeted that he has “no interest” in serving on the Supreme Court and looked forward to “ confirming constitutional conservatives” in the Senate.
The list also includes a handful of individuals who have served in the Trump administration or his White House, as well as Trump appointees to lower federal courts. It includes, for instance, Gregory Katsas, who served as deputy White House counsel before Trump chose him to serve on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit in September 2017.
Trump’s updated list included the following potential nominees to join the bench alongside his two other appointees, Gorsuch and Kavanaugh:
Bridget Bade, a Trump appointee to the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals
Daniel Cameron, Republican attorney general of Kentucky
Paul Clement, former solicitor general under President George W. Bush
Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.)
Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas)
Stuart Kyle Duncan, a Trump appointee to the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals
Steven Engel, currently the assistant attorney general for the Office of Legal Counsel
Noel Francisco, who recently stepped down as the U.S. solicitor general
Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.)
James Ho, a Trump appointee to the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals
Gregory Katsas, who served as deputy White House counsel in the Trump administration before being tapped for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit
Barbara Lagoa, 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals
Christopher Landau, the U.S. ambassador to Mexico and former clerk for Justices Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas
Carlos Muñiz, a justice of the Supreme Court of Florida
Martha Pacold, a Trump appointee to the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois
Peter Phipps, a Trump appointee to the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals
Sarah Pitlyk, a Trump appointee to the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri
Alison Jones Rushing, U.S. Circuit Judge of the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals
Kate Todd, former chief counsel for the litigation arm of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce
Lawrence VanDyke, a Trump appointee to the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals
Updated: 11:07 a.m.