President Donald Trump intends on nominating a replacement for the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) intends on having the Senate vote on the nominee. So, the question now is, “Who is Trump going to pick?”
The president gave us a hint on Saturday, the Washington Times reports, indicating that he will “most likely” nominate a woman to replace Ginsburg.
The Washington Times reports that two female judges, in particular, have emerged as frontrunners to fill Ginsburg’s seat, citing as sources “people familiar with the discussions.”
These two female judges are Barbara Lagoa of the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals and Amy Coney Barrett of the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals. According to reports, both women were mentioned by President Trump during a phone call that took place on Friday night between him and McConnell.
Who’s it going to be?
Lagoa is a first-generation Cuban-American from the battleground state of Florida. Her parents were Cuban refugees, having fled from communist dictator Fidel Castro in the 1960s. Lagoa was an assistant U.S. Attorney and then a member of the Florida State Supreme Court before being nominated by Trump and confirmed to the 11th Circuit Court.
“She’s an extraordinary person,” the president said of Lagoa on Saturday. “I’ve heard at length about her. She’s Hispanic and highly respected — Miami. Highly respected.”
Barrett, on the other hand, is a former law professor from Notre Dame University. She is being considered a favorite for a number of reasons, including that Trump, back in 2019, at the time of the last Supreme Court confirmation hearing, allegedly said that he was “saving [Barrett] for Ginsburg.”
Barrett has earned criticism from the left for her position against abortion, which she made known in academic writings while she was still at Notre Dame. In those writings, she referred to the “unborn victims” of abortion and she criticized Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court decision that made abortion legal nationwide.
Whoever the president ends up picking has to make it through what is likely to be the most contentious confirmation process in history. This is another reason why Barrett and Lagoa are considered frontrunners: Barrett was confirmed by the Senate by a vote of 55-43, and Lagoa by a staggering 80-15.
Besides Lagoa and Barrett, other possibilities, according to CNBC, are Allison Rushing, 4th Circuit Court of Appeals, and Amul Thapar, 6th Circuit Court of Appeals.
Referring to his shortlist of potential Supreme Court nominees, Trump said that “from a constitutional standpoint, I think it’s the greatest list ever assembled. I think we’ll have a very popular choice whoever that may be.”
We’ll have to see if the president is right. With the way he is speaking, it doesn’t seem that we’ll have to wait too long to find out.