Pres. Trump adds 20 names to his list of Supreme Court candidates

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WASHINGTON (NewsNation Now) — President Donald Trump Wednesday announced 20 additional names to his list of Supreme Court candidates he’s pledged to choose from in the event of future vacancies.

Trump also called on Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden to do the same.

“Apart from matters of war and peace, the nomination of a Supreme Court justice is the most important decision an American president can make,” Trump said. “For this reason, candidates for president owe the American people a specific list of individuals they consider for the United States Supreme Court.”

Most of the names on the new list are judges who Trump already has appointed to lower federal courts.

The following names were added to the list:  

  • Bridget Bade of Arizona, United States Circuit Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
  • Daniel Cameron, Kentucky Attorney General
  • United States Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Arkansas)
  • Paul Clement, former United States Solicitor General
  • United States Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas)
  • Stuart Kyle Duncan of Louisiana, United States Circuit Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
  • Steven Engel, Assistant Attorney General for the Office of Legal Counsel of the United States Department of Justice
  • Noel Francisco, former Solicitor General of the United States
  • United States Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Missouri)
  • James Ho, United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
  • Gregory Katsas, Judge on the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.
  • Barbara Lagoa, Judge on the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit
  • Christopher Landau, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States of America to the United Mexican States
  • Carlos Muñiz, Justice on the Supreme Court of Florida
  • Martha Pacold, Judge on the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois
  • Peter Phipps, Judge on the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit
  • Sarah Pitlyk, United States District Judge of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri
  • Allison Jones Rushing, Judge on the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
  • Kate Todd, Deputy Assistant to the President and Deputy Counsel to the President
  • Lawrence VanDyke, Judge on the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit

“The president is very excited to share who he would nominate to the Supreme Court,” White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany said ahead of the announcement. She said Trump “wants Constitution-abiding judges, he wants textualists who believe the words of a statute actually are what they are, not subject to interpretation.”

The move to release a list is a repeat of a successful strategy Trump employed during his 2016 campaign. Four years ago he took the unprecedented step of announcing potential Supreme Court nominees in a bid to win over conservatives and evangelicals who were not enthusiastic about his personal flaws but came around to his candidacy because of his promises on judicial appointments.

Trump had previously said on Twitter the announcement of a new list would come by Sept. 1 and that it “may include some, or many of those already on the list.”

Biden too has said he’s working on a list of potential nominees, but the campaign has given no indication that it would release any names before the November election, and doing so would risk giving Trump and Republicans a target to put Biden on defense. Any vacancy would give the president the ability to shape the future of the powerful court, which is currently divided 5-4 between conservatives and liberals.

The Associated Press contributed to this report

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