The last Supreme Court nomination announcement came under a mild March sun in the White House’s Rose Garden, but Donald Trump will reveal his pick under television camera lights on Tuesday night.
The new president used a Monday morning tweet to say he will announce his high court pick as a prime time (8 p.m.) event. The timing reflects a campaign and fledgling administration that largely is calibrated for television coverage.
I have made my decision on who I will nominate for The United States Supreme Court. It will be announced live on Tuesday at 8:00 P.M. (W.H.)— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 30, 2017
Trump last week had said to expect an announcement on Thursday. The change appears, in part at least, an attempt to deflect attention — and media coverage — away from weekend protests and airport chaos set off by Friday’s Trump-signed executive order banning individuals from seven Muslim-majority countries from entering the United States.
Neil Gorsuch of 10th Circuit based in Denver, Thomas Hardiman of the 3rd Circuit based in Philadelphia, and William Pryor of the 11th Circuit based in Atlanta are seen as the front-runners, according to The Associated Press.
All three are solidly conservative judges appointed to the bench by President George W. Bush.
The president also said he is considering the Senate confirmation process as he decides on his choice.
“I think also it’s who’s going to get approved,” Trump told CBN News, part of the Christian Broadcasting Network, last week.
Senate Republicans successfully blocked former President Barack Obama's last high court pick, Merrick Garland, from even getting a Judiciary Committee hearing. On Sunday, Democratic Whip Richard Durbin of Illinois declined to rule out doing the same for Trump’s nominee, saying the pick must be in the “mainstream” of American political thought.
Todd Ruger contributed to this report.