Judge Brett Kavanaugh of the U.S. Court of Appeals for D.C. and Judge Thomas Hardiman of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit are President Donald Trump's leading Supreme Court picks, according to traders on an internet betting site.
Democrats who plan to oppose Trump's nominee are focusing on two Republican moderates, Susan Collins of ME and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, hoping to turn them against Trump's selection.
A senior White House official says Trump called Kavanaugh on Sunday evening to inform him that he was his choice to be nominated to the Supreme Court.
The National Republican Senate Committee issued a quick criticism of Casey's announcement.
Ahead of the decision, Trump has built suspense about whom his pick will be.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Kentucky, who once held a court seat open for almost a year before the 2016 election to keep former President Barack Obama from filling it, lambasted Democrats for announcing their opposition before Trump had decided on a nominee.
While Trump has already made one pick for the high court since he became president in January 2017, the vacancy left by the retirement of Justice Anthony Kennedy, announced late last month, has weightier implications.
President Donald Trump will announce his Supreme Court nominee tonight at 9 p.m. EDT. Kavanaugh also worked in the White House during George W. Bush's presidency.
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The nomination is Trump's second to the nation's highest court, a rare presidential privilege that could seal a key part of Trump's legacy less than two years into his first term. Barletta was elected to the U.S. House in 2010-a Republican "wave" year-and was also rumored to be on Trump's short list for labor secretary during the transition.
Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein said Trump's choice "could have a bigger effect on Americans' daily lives than any justice in our lifetime".
Hardiman has a personal connection to the president, having served with Trump's sister on the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Philadelphia.
Kennedy was the swing vote on many landmark decisions, including those involving abortion and same-sex marriage. Susan Collins said she wouldn't support a nominee hostile to the court's precedent in Roe v. Wade - and the conservative Barrett has expressed a willingness to reverse precedent she sees as wrongly decided. "But this is really about the process and whether or not the corporate right is going to be in charge of picking the Supreme Court in a seat, in a nomination that's likely to tip the scales substantially".
The nominee, a District of Columbia appeals court judge, is a former adviser to ex-President George W Bush.
The US Supreme Court is the ultimate arbiter on contentious laws and disputes between states and the federal government.
Those views could have implications for independent counsel Robert Mueller's investigation of Trump. Senate Republicans hold only a 51-49 majority, leaving them hardly any margin if Democrats hold the line. Ten Democrats from states that Trump won are up for re-election this fall and will be under tremendous pressure to back the president's nominee. "And I believe this person will do a great job", Trump told reporters on Sunday afternoon after spending the weekend at his private golf club in New Jersey. "We don't know who the nominee is going to be yet", Sen.