Justice Kennedy announces retirement, now what?

Hugh Fox
June 28, 2018

With U.S. Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy announcing his retirement, President Donald Trump told reporters on Wednesday he will nominate a replacement from a list he had earlier compiled of 25 potential justices.

Kennedy called it the "highest of honors to serve on this Court", and he expressed his "profound gratitude for having had the privilege to seek in each case how best to know, interpret, and defend the Constitution and the laws that must always conform to its mandates and promises". Although conservative, he sometimes joined the liberal wing of the court and authored landmark opinions on cases dealing with abortion, campaign finance and LGBT rights, including same-sex marriage.

Speaking at a campaign rally just hours after Kennedy's announcement, Trump said he was hoping to pick a successor with "intellect" - a "great one" who could serve "40 years, 45 years". "Justice Kennedy is a star". Mike Lee - and has said he would choose a nominee from that list.

"He said, too, that admiration for his colleagues on the Court means that he will retain warm ties with each of them in the years to come", the court's statement said. If Democrats stand united in opposition to Trump's choice, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky can lose no more than one vote.

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"Abortion rights are going to be reined in, if not eliminated", said Sam Erman, an associate professor of law at the University of Southern California, who clerked under Justice Kennedy.

Larsen is a former law professor and special counsel to the dean at the University of MI who also clerked for the late Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia. Kirsten Gillibrand of NY wrote Tuesday on Twitter.

Supreme Court Associate Justice Anthony Kennedy speaks during a swearing in ceremony for Judge Neil Gorsuch as an associate justice of the Supreme Court in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington, DC, U.S., April 10, 2017. "And hopefully we're going to pick somebody who will be as outstanding". "That will begin immediately", Trump said at the White House. Grassley said the Senate could provide the extra funds for additional committee majority and minority staff, and he would want the nomination right away. "A high-profile Supreme Court battle will certainly remind all your voters what is at stake". "If there is a Supreme Court vacancy, it takes priority".

But picking an ultra-conservative as his nominee would carry risk because Trump would have to rely on some moderate Republicans to win approval in the U.S. Senate, where his fellow Republicans have a narrow majority.

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Kethledge was appointed to the Sixth Circuit by President George W. Bush and confirmed in 2008. "I'm optimistic we'll be able to get this done".

"It is imperative that the President's nominee be considered fairly and not subjected to personal attacks", Mr. McConnell said. "That research will be immensely important, and so will be the questions that we ask, as they were with Justice Gorsuch, even though we disagreed with the result". "And the consequences for our nation couldn't be higher".

Despite previously siding with liberal justices in some key cases, Kennedy was a reliable conservative vote during the latest term.

Abortion is likely to be one of the flash points in the nomination fight. "The seat should not be filled with someone who threatens or undermines voting rights, individual freedoms, or the balance of powers enshrined in our founding documents". "No nominee should be rammed through without due consideration and debate".

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