Abortion rights under threat with Trump's new Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh


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Republicans are eager for conservatives to gain a firm majority on the court. The stakes are enormous, and advocacy groups that don't have to unveil their donors are spending heavily to shape the fight.

On "Fox & Friends", Fox News senior judicial analyst Judge Andrew Napolitano explained that of Trump's final four potential nominees, the Washington, D.C., establishment most wanted Kavanaugh.

Trump is set to announce his choice Monday night. McConnell, who called Kavanaugh a "superb choice", hasn't explicitly said whether his goal is to complete a confirmation before the November midterm elections.

Donald Trump's nomination came from a short list of federal appeals court judges, who all staunch conservative credentials.

The millions of documents can be requested by Senate Democrats and would take time for the National Archives, the federal court system and other stake holders to compile, meaning a confirmation hearing before the Senate leaves for August recess would be unlikely.

A nominee needs a majority of 51 votes but, as Senator John McCain is battling cancer in Arizona, Trump can now only muster 50 votes.

A key sticking point for Kavanaugh on many of these and other cases appears to be whether Congress has provided the specific authority to issue the environmental regulations in question. Susan Collins of ME and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska.

In 2006, Kavanaugh said he would respect Roe v. Wade, but Rabhan said that did not assuage her concern. Democrats who were invited but declined included Sens. Joe Manchin of West Virginia, Joe Donnelly of IN and Heidi Heitkamp North Dakota. But with only 49 votes in the Senate, Democrats have few tools to work with. The two have supported access to abortion services.

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Republicans changed the Senate's rules past year to allow them to confirm a Supreme Court justice with a simple majority vote.

McConnell and Trump were rewarded this year with a string of 5-4 decisions in which Gorsuch cast votes favorable to the president and the GOP.

While Kavanaugh was summarizing Rehnquist's thinking and not explicitly adopting it as his own (nor did he say whether he interprets stare decisis to mean Roe should survive regardless of that critique), his summary of Roe as "freewheeling judicial creation of unenumerated rights" may be the clearest indicator yet that he thinks the case was wrongly decided. While that argument won't sway Republicans, their strategy could stiffen Democratic resolve to oppose the nominee.

Democrats and liberal advocacy groups quickly lined up in opposition. Gorsuch met with almost three-quarters of the Senate in advance of his hearings.

He says, "Because President Trump has said repeatedly that he would nominate judges to overturn the ACA, the Supreme Court vacancy is only further putting health care front and center, raising the stakes for maintaining these vital health care protections". Still, they could try to sour the hearings by attacking Kavanaugh and trying to complicate the proceedings whenever possible.

The Judiciary Committee need not approve the nomination for it to advance. A day of mass action is planned for 26 August, Women's Equality Day.

The liberal advocacy group Demand Justice will spend $5 million on ads through September and began airing spots Thursday in ME and Alaska aimed at pressuring Collins and Murkowski.

US President Donald Trump speaks to the press aboard Air Force One in flight as he travels from Joint Base Andrews in Maryland, to Bedminster, New Jersey, June 29, 2018.

This studiousness is especially important for a jurist like Kavanaugh, who prioritizes the Constitution's original meaning.