Sen. Robert Casey Jr., D-Pa., who voted against Gorsuch and is facing reelection in a state Trump narrowly won, announced Monday that he will oppose anyone Trump chooses.
Trump spent the weekend mulling over the top contenders, and tweeted on Sunday that an "exceptional person will be chosen!" There is political pressure on the president to pick someone who can get through the confirmation process.
"I will tell each Senator that I revere the Constitution".
"They're good judges", Blunt said on NBC's "Meet the Press".
Barrett, who is 46, has less of a judicial record to review, having just been nominated to the appeals court by Trump previous year.
"I suspect this is going to be a rough, tough, down in the dirt, ear-pulling, nose-biting fight", Kennedy said. And he joins us now.
SARAH MCCAMMON, BYLINE: Hey, Rachel. "Any judge on this list is fruit of a corrupt process straight from the D.C. swamp..." But a couple of concerns have arisen. Politico reported Monday that Hardiman is one of the president's top candidates to replace Justice Anthony Kennedy, who is retiring at the end of July. Also, just a lot of material for vetters to go through.
He also recognized Justice Antonin Scalia's wife Maureen, and Edwin Meese, President Reagan's attorney general, who was also in attendance. Barrett has only served as a federal judge since last fall, raising concerns about her experience, but has been a Notre Dame Law School professor for many years. Barrett is a member of the obscure Catholic group People of Praise, which Vox reports requires members to "swear an oath of loyalty and give each other input on personal life decisions". And Feinstein's question was criticized as anti-Catholic.
"You want judges on the court who understand that the best way to preserve freedom and dignity, and prosperity in this country is to have people who are going to interpret the Constitution as it's written and not play politics when they're judges". Lacking a brand name, Kethledge has a strong conservative track record after 10 years on the federal bench.
MARTIN: So who's left on the president's short list? He's been vetted before.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has promised a vote on the nomination before the November midterms, ensuring the outcome will be an issue before voters.
MCCAMMON: Well it's something he needs to think about, for sure. Republicans cried foul, despite threatening the nuclear option in the past, and Democrats who had been opposed to such a rule change quickly changed their tune. You know, that said, he has made promises to his base. The group already has created a web video warning of Trump's pick, and is already running spots in ME and Alaska focusing on Roe v. Wade. Sen.
The conservative group Judicial Crisis Network said it already has purchased a seven-figure ad-buy to support Trump's nominee, in a spot that warns that "extremists will lie and attack" the choice. As a woman and mother, she could upend the narrative pushed by Democrats that Trump's pick would erode women's rights.
MARTIN: And you think that's happening now.
MARTIN: What's the timeline from there?
The White House invited a number of senators to attend the Monday night announcement, including Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, and committee member Kennedy. He's going to Brussels for the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation meeting in the middle of the week.
So if Gorsuch is going to start with his own views, rather than with precedent, those who believe in a woman's right to choose should be anxious.
This means that Republicans will likely have to stay united in supporting Mr. Trump's pick, which could get complicated if moderate GOP Sens.
So the Democratic Senate Majority Leader, Nevada's Harry Reid, made a decision to pull the trigger. We could see hearings as soon as next month.
"There is no one in America more qualified for this position and no one more deserving", said Trump, who called Kavanaugh "one of the sharpest legal minds of our time".
MARTIN: All right. NPR's Sarah McCammon for us this morning.
Much of the groundwork for a successful confirmation comes in private meetings that the nominee will have with individual senators in the coming weeks.