The Trump campaign is keeping pressure on Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden to release a list of potential Supreme Court nominees should he be elected president in November, saying the former vice president is “hiding” the “radical leftists” he would appoint to the high court from the American people.
President Trump’s reelection campaign, for weeks, has been pressing Biden to release a list of potential picks to the Supreme Court, but with the vacancy left by late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the campaign is ramping up its calls.
“President Trump has been completely transparent by releasing names he’s considering for the Supreme Court four times since 2016,” Trump campaign communications director Tim Murtaugh told Fox News.
“Now that Joe Biden has broken his promise to release his own list, what is he hiding?” Murtaugh continued. “We know he’s a tool of the radical left, so the only answer must be that he doesn’t want Americans to see the radical leftists he would appoint, with judicial histories littered with extremist rulings on issues like abortion, religious freedom, immigration, Second Amendment rights and government regulation.”
Biden, in June, told reporters that he was “putting together a list of a group of African American women who are qualified and have the experience to be on the court.”
“I am not going to release that until we go further down the line in vetting them, as well,” Biden said at the time, without committing to a specific date to roll out the names.
But in the days since the news of Ginsburg’s passing, Biden has shifted his stance, seemingly moving away from releasing a list at all, and instead suggesting he could wait to share who he would appoint to a vacancy on the high court until he is potentially elected president.
During an event over the weekend, Biden slammed the president for his push to nominate a judge to the Supreme Court so close to an election, but also suggested he would make his nominations to the court on a bipartisan basis.
“Finally, and perhaps most importantly, if I win, I will make my choice for the Supreme Court—not as part of a partisan election campaign—but as prior presidents did,” Biden said over the weekend. “Only after consulting Democrats and Republicans in the U.S. Senate—and seeking their advice before I ask for their consent.”
He added: “As everyone knows, I have made it clear that my first choice for the Supreme Court will make history as the first African American woman justice.”
Meanwhile, hours after Ginsburg’s passing Friday night, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., vowed that a Trump nominee to the Supreme Court to fill her vacancy “will receive a vote on the floor of the United States Senate.”
The president went on to urge Republican senators to act and confirm a potential nominee “without delay,” and said on Monday he had already narrowed his list of potential nominees to fill Ginsburg’s seat to five people.
The president said that he will make his announcement at the end of the week, following services for the late Supreme Court justice.
“I think it will be on Friday or Saturday and we want to pay respect, it looks like we will have services on Thursday or Friday, as I understand it, and I think we should, with all due respect for Justice Ginsburg, wait for services to be over,” the president said.
The president’s campaign, in turn, said that “the Constitution is clear.”
“The president selects a nominee and the Senate provides advice and consent,” Murtaugh told Fox News. “Those are the rules, and they are the only rules.”
He added: “The president will perform his constitutional duties and make a selection and we hope that the Senate takes it up.”
The president’s shortlist is believed to include Judge Amy Coney Barrett from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, Judge Barbara Logoa of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit, and Judge Allison Jones Rushing of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit, among others.
“The president has released his list of names, showing complete transparency,” Murtaugh said, referring to the list Trump released from the White House earlier this month of more than 20 additional individuals he would consider appointing to the high court — including three GOP senators. “But Joe Biden will not do the same, because, once again, he is hiding things from Americans.”