President Trump is said to be zeroing in on Amy Coney Barrett as a nominee to fill Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s seat on the Supreme Court, though the president has said he is considering five candidates, according to reports.
Barrett, a Midwestern Catholic and favorite of pro-life advocates, had separate meetings with Trump and White House counsel Pat Cipollone on Monday, sources told Bloomberg. Many inside the White House, as well as Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell, would support the nomination of Barrett, a judge on the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals based in Chicago, the report said.
Trump has vowed to name a woman as nominee and told reporters earlier that he was looking at five women but had “one or two” of them in mind as finalists. He confirmed Barrett is one of the women under consideration.
Barrett was one of Trump’s finalists in 2018 when he instead nominated Brett Kavanaugh and she has gained the president’s support as a “smart, hard-nosed, conservative jurist” who would come across well during televised confirmation hearings, Bloomberg reported.
The president believes Barrett will be strong on conservative issues including abortion, gun rights and health care when they come before the Court.
A distant second choice is Appeals Court Judge Barbara Lagoa, a Cuban-American from Florida who could help the president gain support in the battleground state. Though the president is less confident in Lagoa’s conservative credentials as she received 27 Democratic votes when she was confirmed to her position in the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals.
Trump said he “may” meet with Lagoa later this week when he is in Florida.
Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Joan Larsen, Fourth Circuit Judge Allison Jones Rushing and deputy White House counsel Kate Todd make up the rest of Trump’s list, though they have not received serious consideration.
“We’ll make a decision — probably Saturday, but Friday or Saturday,” Trump told reporters.