Is Judge Thomas Hardiman Next in Line for SCOTUS?

With the fight over the confirmation of Neil Gorsuch to the U.S. Supreme Court coming to a boil, some are already discussing the next fight that will come over the Court should Donald Trump have the opportunity in the next four years to nominate yet another judge.

Here’s more from Newsmax:

Now that the nomination to replace Antonin Scalia has been settled — Appeals Court Judge Neil Gorsuch landed the role — there is speculation that Judge Thomas Hardiman will be tapped as the next nominee in the event a selection is necessary.

Given the substantive backing that Judge Hardiman (of the 3rd Circuit) received from conservatives that helped make him a finalist to Gorsuch, there is already mounting speculation he will be on deck for the White House if Justice Anthony Kennedy, 80, decides to retire at the end of the court’s term this year.

White House press secretary Sean Spicer insisted that he didn’t “want to get in front of the president. [But Hardiman] continues to have the president’s support; somebody who the president was unbelievably impressed with. So we’ll have to see what vacancies come down the pike.”

“He’s an impressive, impressive jurist,” Spicer told me on Wednesday. “Obviously the four that really made that final list for the president were impressive [along with Gorsuch and Hardiman, the final four for Trump to consider included Appellate Judges Bill Pryor of Alabama and Wisconsin’s Diane Sykes].”

Hours before Trump made the Gorsuch announcement on Tuesday night, we spoke to former Pennsylvania Senator and past Republican presidential hopeful Rick Santorum about his vigorous support of Hardiman for the high court.

“I spoke to President Trump back in December, before he even took office about Tom,” Santorum said. “And I spoke to Mike Pence, Jeff Sessions, Steve Bannon, Reince Priebus, and [Trump political operative] Dave Bossie.”

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