The activity around Kavanaugh was an early glimpse of the frenzied jockeying around the short list of candidates in the run-up to Trump's July 9 announcement. He served as a federal trial judge in the Western District of Pennsylvania for four years before joining the appeals court. Mike Lee is also in the running and has reportedly spoken with Trump.
Hardiman has served on the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals since 2007, after being appointed by President George W. Bush and winning unanimous approval in the Senate.
Good bet: Coney Barrett's bio-a young mother of seven, a person of faith, and a former clerk of Antonin Scalia who is "reliably conservative"-surely entices the president, writes Chris Cillizza at CNN". Paul's objections echo those made by outside conservative groups over Kavanaugh, who is seen as a top contender for the vacancy but who activists warn is too much of an establishment-aligned choice. He told Fox News last week, "My understanding is that that is what the Senate rules allow and you're still a senator until you're no longer a senator". Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and former Sen. Republicans have 51 members, but Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine and Sen.
Judge Raymond Kethledge poses for an undated photo. The call, though, lasted less than five minutes. Democrats on Thursday highlighted his conservative record on reproductive rights, voting rights, and the right of workers to organize.More news: Election of new Mexican president adds uncertainty to future of NAFTA talks
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The high court could also take a different route and declare that a fetus is a "person", which wouldn't allow states to provide abortions under the 14th Amendment. The campaign will invest heavily in the ME and Alaska markets to stoke the mounting pressure on Collins and Murkowski to vote against the nominee. Collins, a pro-choice centrist who has bucked her party on pivotal votes in the past, will be one of the most closely watched by Democrats and Republicans alike.
On Wednesday, Sen. Susan Collins, a moderate Republican from ME, reiterated that she could not vote for a nominee with a "demonstrated hostility" to Roe v. Wade, the landmark 1973 Supreme Court decision that established a woman's right to an abortion.
A NARAL-sponsored automated poll from Public Policy Polling released Thursday said some 63 percent of Pine Tree State voters do not want the Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade.
Kennedy, who has served on the Supreme Court since 1988, has always been recognized as the institution's lone swing vote preventing either the conservative or liberal factions from becoming ascendant.
"I'm amazed that people on both sides of the aisle have already committed to voting either for or against a nominee whose identity they do not know", she added.