President Donald Trump on Saturday signaled he would soon nominate a potential replacement to the late Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who died Friday evening at 87. Judge Amy Coney Barrett, a Catholic mother of seven, is widely reported to be the front-runner in the president’s deliberations regarding a nominee.
Barrett, a federal judge on the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals, is reported to lead the president’s short list, and was also a contender for Trump’s second Supreme Court nomination in 2018, before the president nominated Justice Brett Kavanaugh.
According to Axios, Trump in 2018 said of Barrett that he was “saving her for Ginsburg” in explanation of his decision not to appoint her to the Supreme Court seat vacated by Justice Anthony Kennedy.
Appointed a federal judge in 2017, Barrett had been a professor at Notre Dame’s law school until her nomination was confirmed. Barrett has twice been honored as “Distinguished Professor of the Year” at Notre Dame, and was a law clerk for Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia.
As a nominee to the federal bench, Barrett was pointedly questioned by Democratic senators on the Judiciary Committee in 2017 on how her Catholic faith would influence her decisions as a judge on cases of abortion and same-sex marriage.
During confirmation hearings, Senator Diane Feinstein said of Barrett’s Catholicism “the conclusion one draws is that the dogma lives loudly within you. And that’s of concern.”
“You’re controversial because many of us that have lived our lives as women really recognize the value of finally being able to control our reproductive systems,” she said. “And Roe entered into that, obviously.”
Barrett repeatedly said that as a judge, she would uphold the law of the land, but many pro-life groups believe she would be open to overturning the precedent of Roe vs. Wade, and uphold state restrictions on abortion.
Full story at Catholic News Agency.