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Bill Kristol: Trump's SCOTUS Choice Could Come Next Week

Image: Bill Kristol: Trump's SCOTUS Choice Could Come Next Week

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By    |   Thursday, 17 Nov 2016 05:32 PM

President-elect Donald Trump is "seriously considering" announcing his choice to the Supreme Court as early as after Thanksgiving, conservative writer Bill Kristol said Thursday.

"Obviously, you can't make that nomination until he is president of the United States," Kristol, editor of The Weekly Standard, told Jake Tapper on CNN. "He has to wait until January 20th."

Such a disclosure would allow the Senate to "begin its background work so the person can come up quickly for hearings and a vote after January 20th," he said.

In September, Trump released a list of potential candidates to replace Associate Justice Antonin Scalia, who died in February.

President Barack Obama then nominated Federal Appeals Court Judge Merrick Garland to the post, but Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell refused to schedule hearings on the selection.

News reports Thursday indicated that Texas Sen. Ted Cruz was being considered as Scalia's replacement by Trump's transition team.

Besides making good on a campaign promise, a Trump court announcement would galvanize the right, Kristol said.

"The conservatives will be cheered up by the lists of candidates," he told Tapper. "Mostly sitting judges.

"They'll probably be very easy to rally Republicans around. The politics of this is it unites conservatives.

"A lot of Republicans had all kinds of problems about Donald Trump, but they wanted a conservative replacement for Justice Scalia.

"The left will fight it because they always fight the Supreme Court nominations," he added. "That's one of the rare fights that Republicans are pretty good at."

In addition, Kristol said that Trump was being more "establishment" — based on some of the names being floated for cabinet picks.

"Generally speaking, if you look at this transition, both in the names that are being seriously considered and the policies being floated, they are less extreme than Donald Trump talked about in the campaign," he told Tapper.

He noted such possible nominees as South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley for secretary of state and Trump's planned meeting this weekend with 2012 presidential nominee and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney.

"They're within the limits of Trump and 'Trump World,' which is still somewhat confusing and complicated," Kristol said. "I would say he's being more establishment, if I could use that term, than I would have expected."

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President-elect Donald Trump is "seriously considering" announcing his choice to the Supreme Court as early as after Thanksgiving, conservative writer Bill Kristol said Thursday.
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Thursday, 17 Nov 2016 05:32 PM
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