Donald Trump's most winning week of his presidency continued today with Justice Anthony Kennedy announcing his pending retirement from the Supreme Court, and Hollywood types are making their feelings known about it.
"This is an opportunity for President Trump to nominate a strong constitutionalist, which could be his single greatest legacy 20, 30, 40 years from now".
Soon after he was sworn into office in 2017, Trump nominated Judge Neil Gorsuch to succeed the late Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, who had died a year earlier. Trump's nominee is likely to give the conservatives a solid majority and will face a Senate process in which Republicans hold the slimmest majority, but Democrats can't delay confirmation. The search, the president said, will begin immediately, and Kennedy's replacement will be chosen from the list of 25 candidates he considered a year ago, when he ultimately chose Gorsuch.
Republicans, with a 51-49 advantage in the Senate, are planning to move ahead. But to many folks, one thing was certain: lit is dead.
He also has been a key vote when conservatives have won major rulings on the outcome of the 2000 presidential election in favor of George W. Bush, gun rights, limiting regulation of campaign money and gutting a key provision of the landmark federal Voting Rights Act.
Justice Sonia Sotomayor in her dissent, called Trump's order a result of "anti-Muslim animus" and blasted the majority for "ignoring the facts, misconstruing our legal precedent, and turning a blind eye to the pain and suffering". If the Senate divides 50-50, Vice President Mike Pence could break a tie to confirm the nominee. Should Republicans proceed with confirmation hearings before the November election? He also opined that no one would believe Trump is going to choose a Supreme Court justice that would be considered moderate and a swing vote like Kennedy was.
Michael Waldman, president of the Brennan Center for Justice at NYU School of Law, said Kennedy's role as the deciding votes in big cases means this confirmation fight will be more consequential than any in decades.