CBS News says it has learned that DC Circuit Court Judge Brett Kavanaugh and Chicago Circuit Court Judge Amy Coney Barrett are now Trump's leading contenders for the appointment to the nation's highest court. Kennedy often sided with more liberal justices on issues like abortion and gay rights.
The future orientation of the Supreme Court depends on who will succeed Kennedy, a conservative.
Since each Supreme Court justice needs 51 votes to be confirmed, Democrats would only need one Republican to side against the nominee, assuming no Democrats break rank.
On Sunday, Leonard Leo, an outside adviser to Trump on judicial nominations, said he expected Trump to select a nominee who is mindful of precedent but who is also more "originalist and textualist".
Indeed, a new poll released Monday found such widespread support for Roe v. Wade.
It's President Donald Trump's second year in the oval office and the second time he'll be naming a Supreme Court nominee. He also pointed to Barrett's past statements on the Affordable Care Act and contraception. Nelson said, standing beside the Hillsborough River in downtown Tampa after receiving an endorsement from the League of Conservation Voters' political committee. "Look what Trump is doing to the environment". "I would tell my pro-life friends: You can be pro-life and conservative, but you can also believe in 'stare decisis, '" he said, citing the legal term involving legal precedent that means "to stand by things decided". But he promised that "they are outstanding people".
Assuming Trump nominates the kind of justice he has said he intends to nominate, Nelson said he is optimistic the Senate can block it even though Democrats lack enough votes.
Murkowski and Maine Sen. So it was reassuring to many pro-choicers when Collins insisted, in an interview with CNN this weekend, that she "would not support a nominee who demonstrated hostility to Roe v. Wade." .
Nelson opposed Gorsuch a year ago, but he remained on the fence almost two months before making that decision.
The White House does not appear to be counting on Nelson's support and instead is focusing on three other vulnerable Democrats facing re-election: Sen.
Recently the court ruled, 5-4, in favour of the Trump administration's ban people from eight countries visiting the United States, which opponents characterised as a religious ban on Muslims even though it applied to Venezuela and North Korea.
All three voted for Gorsuch and met with Trump at the White House on Thursday to discuss the vacancy. Pryor was a top finalist to replace Justice Antonin Scalia's seat a year ago, but sources say Pryor has been eliminated this time around.
A controversial issue overwhelming the debate on the appointment of Kennedy's successor is abortion, which was legalised by a Supreme Court decision in 1973 and may come up again before the court.