Pres. Trump: 'Very Close' To Making Final Supreme Court Pick

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Pres. Trump: 'Very Close' To Making Final Supreme Court Pick

President Trump teased his "exceptional" choice to replace Justice Anthony Kennedy over the weekend; confirming his plans to announce his nominee at 9:00pm Monday evening from the White House.

While Trump didn't name the four, top contenders for the role have included federal appeals judges Brett Kavanaugh, Raymond Kethledge, Amy Coney Barrett and Thomas Hardiman.

Relishing the guessing game beyond the White House gates, Trump had little to say about his choice.

Trump planned to announce his pick Monday night. "This is a nightmare for red-state Democrats, to oppose a highly qualified nominee and all four of these people are highly qualified", he added. But he had made his final decision, according to a person with knowledge of the president's thinking who was not authorized to speak publicly.

Hardiman, who turned 53 on Sunday, is a judge on the 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals and was the runner-up to Trump's first nominee, Neil Gorsuch. She considers federal appeals from Wisconsin, Indiana and IL and hears the cases in the Dirksen Federal Building courthouse in Chicago's Loop.

Kethledge serves as a judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit in Cincinnati. He is also former law clerk to Kennedy, as is Kethledge.

FILE PHOTO: The U.S. Supreme Court is seen as the court nears the end of its term in Washington, U.S., June 11, 2018. "And that's really ultimately what drives the conservative legal movement..."

Current position: Barrett was confirmed by the Senate to a lifetime appointment on the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals this past October.

Still, for conservative activists, such distinctions between the potential nominees are quibbles. He claimed that due to how dysfunctional the two parties were, it is unlikely that many Democrats would support a Trump nominee.

"There's nobody that President Trump could nominate from a conservative vent that will get many Democratic votes". As a result, Democrats have accused Republicans of stealing a Supreme Court seat.

Republicans are eager for conservatives to gain a firm majority on the court.

Check back in with Mediaite for coverage of Trump's decision tonight. Trump told reporters on Sunday that he is "very close to making a decision" and all four people on the list are "excellent".

They are calling on Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., to wait until after the November election to schedule a hearing and vote.

The White House said former Republican Senator Jon Kyl, now a Washington lobbyist, will help Trump's nominee navigate the Senate confirmation process. He has ruled against voting rights. The court could also be called upon to render judgment on issues of personal significance to Trump and his administration including matters arising from Special Counsel Robert Mueller's ongoing Russia-related investigation and several civil lawsuits pending against Trump.

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