President Trump said Judge Amy Coney Barrett was a “natural fit” to replace Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg and said he and his Supreme Court nominee did not discuss the landmark 1973 Roe v. Wade abortion ruling in meetings at the White House.
“And I just felt that this was the right time,” the president said in an interview that aired Sunday on “Fox & Friends.”
“But when this happened with Justice Ginsburg, when this happened. This just seemed like a natural fit,” he continued.
Host Pete Hegseth asked Trump whether he and Barrett talked about any specific court cases during meetings at the White House before announcing his intention to make her his third high court nominee.
“No, specifically, I didn’t do that because in theory you, it’s nicer if you don’t. … You can talk about anything you want, but I just really got to know a little bit. And when this was happening, in the process of happening, I called her and I said, I’d like to have you come down,” the president replied.
“I didn’t discuss certain concepts and certain things. If some people say you shouldn’t – I don’t see any reason why you shouldn’t – but I decided not to do it. And I think it gives her freedom to do what she has to do. She has to make rulings. But I think she’s gonna make a lot of people very proud,” the president said.
Trump was asked if he personally would like to see Roe v. Wade overturned in light of Barrett being the third conservative he has nominated to the court along with Justices Brett Kavanaugh and Neil Gorsuch.
“So I didn’t think it was for me to discuss that with her. Because it’s something she’s going to be ruling on and this is what I was told – although I would have had the right to do that,” the president responded.
“But if you look at her, her past actions, rulings, I guess she maybe would be in the category that you mentioned, I don’t know, I can say this that she is certainly conservative in her views and her rulings. And we’ll have to see how that all works out,” he said.
If Barrett is confirmed by the Senate, conservatives would have a 6-3 advantage on the court following Ginsburg’s death more than a week ago at 87.
Hegseth asked if he thought the Supreme Court would have a chance to rule on a “life issue.”
“It’s certainly possible and maybe they do it in a different way,” Trump said.
“Maybe they give it back to the states. You just don’t know what’s going to happen,” the president said, adding that he’s been surprised by “some of the rulings we’ve already had over the last year.” “You think you know somebody and then you get rulings that are a little bit different than you think could happen. So you never know what’s going to happen,” he said.
Trump formally announced Barrett’s selection as a justice during a White House ceremony Saturday afternoon.
“It is my honor to nominate one of our nation’s most brilliant and gifted legal minds to the Supreme Court. She is a woman of unparalleled achievement, towering intellect, sterling credentials, and unyielding loyalty to the Constitution,” the president said in the Rose Garden.
Her confirmation hearings are set to begin Oct. 12 in the Senate Judiciary Committee, and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said he wants a full vote on her nomination before the Nov. 3 election.
Democrats fiercely oppose Trump picking a nominee so soon to the election and raise how McConnell refused to allow a vote on former President Obama’s pick, Merrick Garland, in 2016.
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