President Trump has reportedly said he is “saving” Judge Amy Barrett of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit to replace Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg on the Supreme Court, according to Axios.
Barrett was a popular choice among conservative activists as a candidate to replace Justice Anthony Kennedy before Trump eventually nominated Justice Brett Kavanaugh.
Axios reported that Trump has made clear his desire to replace Ginsburg with Barrett since Kennedy’s decision to retire, telling people on separate occasions, “I’m saving her for Ginsburg.”
Trump also opted against nominating Barrett over concerns that her opposition to abortion rights would lead Sens. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) and Susan Collins (R-Maine) to vote against her, according to the news outlet. Aides were reportedly confident enough Republicans would gain Senate seats in the 2018 midterms that they decided a more conservative nominee would stand a better chance of confirmation after the elections.
Ginsburg, 86, recently returned to the bench after missing a series of cases in January because of cancer surgery last December.
The Hill has reached out to the White House for comment.
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