Donald Trump released his long-awaited list of possible Supreme Court nominees today. All eleven are conservatives, most originally appointed to appellate courts by George W. Bush. Compared to anyone Clinton or Sanders might conceivably appoint, they all could be regarded as “strict constructionist” in the Antonin Scalia mold.
One, Allison Eid of Colorado, clerked for the currently most conservative justice, Clarence Thomas. She was also speechwriter for William Bennett. Who knew Reagan’s secretary of Education needed writers—he’s a distinguished author himself—but Eid is clearly no slouch. Here’s Wikipedia’s description of the jurisprudence of another potential nominee, Missouri’s Richard Gruender:
In Planned Parenthood Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota v. Rounds, No. 05-3093, a panel of the Eighth Circuit upheld an injunction that struck down a South Dakota informed consent law that required abortion providers to inform patients, among other things, that an “abortion will terminate the life of a whole, separate, unique, living human being.” Gruender dissented, arguing that the law was constitutional and did not unduly burden women seeking abortions or infringe on the freedom of speech of physicians. The Eighth Circuit heard the case en banc and ruled in 2008 by a vote of 7–4, in an opinion authored by Gruender, that the law was, on its face, constitutional.
Diane Sykes and William Pryor, both also on the list, have been bandied about for some years as possible Republican SCOTUS nominees.
I could go on, but the point is this—Trump, thus far, has delivered as promised. This list would build a Supreme Court that most, if not all, Republicans could more than live with for many years. I know there will be holdouts who will claim Trump is prevaricating and will end up nominating, say, Gloria Allred (not very likely, I think). Or that he should have Ted Cruz on the list. Who knows? Over time that could change.
But I think I can confidently say the #NeverTrump movement just took a mortal blow.