President Trump has announced that he will nominate a woman in the next week to succeed the late Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
"I will be putting forth a nominee next week. It will be a woman," Trump said Saturday at a rally in Fayetteville, North Carolina.
“We win an election and those are the consequences,” the president said. He then signaled that it's possible the approval process for his nominee might stretch into the lame-duck period after the election. “We have a lot of time. We have plenty of time. We're talking about January 20th."
But Trump appears to be losing Republican support in the Senate in his bid to get a nominee quickly approved. Some left-leaning GOP senators now disagree with Trump's plan, contending that the decision should be made by the president who is elected on Nov. 3.
"Given the proximity of the presidential election, however, I do not believe that the Senate should vote on the nominee prior to the election," said Susan Collins (R-ME). "In fairness to the American people, who will either be re-electing the president or selecting a new one, the decision on a lifetime appointment to the Supreme Court should be made by the president who is elected on November 3rd."
Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) joins Collins in resisting Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s commitment to promptly fill Ginsburg’s seat.
"I would not vote to confirm a Supreme Court nominee. We are 50-some days away from an election," Murkowski said.
If two more Republicans join them, that could put an end to the confirmation process.
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Who Will Trump Pick?
One of Trump's top names being mentioned is the 7th Circuit's Amy Coney Barrett who was said to have been a close runner-up to Brett Kavanaugh during the replacement of Justice Anthony Kennedy.
John Malcolm of the Heritage Foundation's Meese Center for Legal and Judicial Studies told CBN News that Barrett "would be a superb Supreme Court justice", but Senate Democrats already signaled how hard they would fight against her when they opposed her during her confirmation hearing to the 7th Circuit.
But Malcolm says she handled it very well. "Anybody who watched that confirmation hearing was well aware of the fact that she showed great grace under fire," he explained.
Other possible female nominees from President Trump's list include:
- Bridget Bade, a Judge on the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.
- Barbara Lagoa, a Judge on the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit.
- Martha Pacold, a Judge on the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois.
- Sarah Pitlykon, a Judge on the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri.
- Allison Jones Rushing, a Judge on the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit.
- Kate Todd, a Deputy Assistant to the President and Deputy Counsel to the President.
It can take several months to confirm a Supreme Court justice and there is little time before the November elections.
But, President Trump is optimistic that the process won't take too long. "I think it's going to move very quickly," he told reporters.
CORRECTION: An earlier version of this story included a headline that appeared to imply that President Trump will actually be replacing Ruth Bader Ginsburg this week. To clarify, he will only be announcing his nominee this week.