Presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump released a list of his own potential Supreme Court nominees Wednesday, featuring two University of Michigan Law School faculty members.
Raymond Kethledge, intermittent law lecturer, and Joan Larsen, special counsel to the associate dean and lecturer II in law, were two of 11 judges Trump would consider nominating to the Supreme Court to fill the seat of the late Justice Antonin Scalia, if he is elected president.
This move follows the refusal of Senate Republicans to vote on the approval of President Barack Obama’s nominee Merrick Garland. Republican leaders have maintained that they do not believe the president should fill the vacancy during his final year in the White House.
Despite this refusal, the majority of Americans believe the seat should be filled by the Obama administration at 52 percent, with 30 percent believing the seat should be left vacant and the remaining 18 percent having no opinion, according to a recent NBC-Wall Street Journal Poll.
Trump’s decision to provide such a list is another unconventional aspect of his candidacy. Many see this move as an act to appease Republican leaders by demonstrating his allegiance to the Republican Party, which has been largely divided over his nomination.
Prominent party leaders, including the party’s 2012 presidential nominee Mitt Romney and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, have stated they will not be voting for either Trump or his Democratic rival in the general election. Others, including former Speaker of the House John Boehner and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, have pledged their support for Trump.
Paul Ryan, current Speaker of the House, stated May 5 that he was not ready to support Trump as the nominee, but he has since met with Trump to discuss uniting the party.