GOP establishment darling and Court of Appeals judge nominated to fill outgoing Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy’s critical seat.
President Donald Trump has nominated appeal court judge Brett Kavanaugh to replace outgoing Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy, who after three decades of service, will retire at the end of this month.
“Judge Kavanaugh has impeccable credentials, unsurpassed qualifications and a proven commitment to equal justice under the law,” said Trump on Tuesday night.
The president praised Kavanaugh as a “judge’s judge,” “a true thought leader among his peers,” “a brilliant jurist,” and “universally regarded as one of the sharpest legal minds of our times.”
“Mr. President, I am grateful to you. I am humbled by your confidence in me,” said Kavanaugh, after the President’s introduction.
“A judge must be independent, must interpret the law, not make the law,” said Kavanaugh. “…A judge must interpret the Constitution as written, informed by history, tradition, and precedent.”
Kavanaugh, 53, has a long history of genuine legal experience and support from establishment Republicans. Should he be confirmed, his presence will tilt the court further to the right, as he is considerably more conservative than the more centrist, swing-vote conservative Kennedy.
Having issued nearly 300 opinions during his tenure on the DC Circuit Court of Appeals, Kavanaugh boasted considerably more bench experience than any of the other prospective nominees—Raymond Kethledge, Amy Coney Barrett, and Thomas Hardiman.
Christian conservatives had little but praise for Trump’s nomination.
The Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission president Russell Moore said that he was confident that Kavanaugh would be a “strong …