Trump Narrows Supreme Court Pick, Announcement Coming MONDAY — THREE LEFT

Things to know about abortion and the Supreme Court

Judge Brett Kavanaugh has the inside track within the White House to fill a vacancy on the Supreme Court, according to three people familiar with the matter.

Trump promised to appoint anti-abortion justices to the high court during his 2016 presidential campaign.

Trump's top contenders for the vacancy at this time are federal appeals judges Amy Coney Barrett, Brett Kavanaugh and Raymond Kethledge, said a person familiar with Trump's thinking who was not authorized to speak publicly.

The source cautioned that others could still be in the mix as Trump prepares to announce his choice Monday to replace the retiring Anthony Kennedy.

Some conservatives have pointed to Kethledge as a potential justice in the mold of Neil Gorsuch, Trump's first Supreme Court nominee past year.

Conservatives and some libertarian-leaning Republicans, including Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky, about the process.

"It could very well drive energy and enthusiasm nationally", said Paul Harstad, a veteran Democratic pollster who for decades advised former Iowa Sen.

These conservatives, including Texas Sen. Because the Senate is split with 51 Republicans, 47 Democrats, and two independents who are members of the Democratic caucus, the stakes could not be higher for the lucky legal mind Trump nominates. John McCain away from Washington, any defections by Republicans could begin to imperil a nominee. Democrats and Republicans once largely agreed that the upcoming midterm elections would hinge on the economy, health care and President Donald Trump's popularity. "Radical Left Takes The Reins", headlined an email aides to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., sent reporters. He's the only lawmaker on Trump's list. IL law protects it. Trump conducted interviews on Monday and Tuesday and has spoken to seven possible candidates.

Other senators have indicated they, too, could be on the fence if Trump picks someone considered to be an ideologue with zealous opinions on divisive issues. The person did not specify which candidates Pence met with and spoke on condition of anonymity Wednesday to describe the private search process. He has said he'll choose from a list of 25 candidates vetted by conservative groups.

But the President did name them or the ones he was planning to interviiew. He said the White House has hosted roughly two dozen similar meetings since then in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building adjacent to the White House.

Trump nominated Barrett, of IN, to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit IN May 2017.

Cruz said President George H.W. Bush's selection of liberal David Souter was "one of the most consequential errors of his presidency".

Democrats fear the new justice, is likely to overturn a court's decision from 1973, called Roe v. Wade that mandated all 50 states to legitimize abortion.

The unlikely marriage between the thrice-married president and Christian conservatives has always been focused on Trump's ability to re-shape the nation's judicial branch.

Brett Kavanaugh, 53, now serves on the U.S. Court of Appeals for Washington, D.C. He has two Yale degrees and first rose to prominence for his involvement in the investigation led by Ken Starr into then-President Bill Clinton's affair with Monica Lewinsky.

Raymond Kethledge, a former Kennedy law clerk and appeals court judge from MI, is thought to be a leading contender.

Bush also nominated Kethledge, of MI, to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit in March 2017.

He has a personal connection to the president, having served with Trump's sister, Maryanne Trump Barry, on the Philadelphia-based 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

Barrett is 46-years-old, married, a mother of 7 and is devoted to her faith.

The sentiment, echoed by evangelical leaders across the country after Justice Anthony Kennedy announced his retirement, underscores the delicate politics that surround a moment many religious conservatives have longed for. The issue creates a hard dance ahead for that state's Democratic Sen. Susan Collins of ME or Alaska's Lisa Murkowski to vote "no", which many view as hard.

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