Trump's SCOTUS Picks Are a 'Conservative's Dream'
But one of them has been laughing at him
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted May 19, 2016 4:25 AM CDT
Updated May 19, 2016 6:17 AM CDT
Texas Supreme Court Justice Don Willett has been making fun of Trump for months.   (AP Photo/Eric Gay)
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(Newser) – For a man more accustomed to choosing reality-TV show contestants, Donald Trump seems to have done a superb job of picking conservative-pleasing potential Supreme Court nominees. The candidate released a list of 11 possible Antonin Scalia replacements on Wednesday, and it's been praised by leading conservatives and denounced by liberals, suggesting Trump made good on his promise to let the conservative Heritage Foundation do most of the choosing for him. A roundup of coverage:

  • The list of nominees, most of whom clerked for Scalia or other conservative SCOTUS justices, is "pretty much everything a conservative activist could hope for," writes Scott Lemieux at the Guardian. He notes that all the nominees are white and only three of them are women, but since all the current justices went to either Harvard or Yale, Trump deserves credit for including graduates of the University of Chicago, Marquette, the University of Minnesota, Duke, Washington University, Tulane, and the University of Michigan.

  • Nan Aron, chief of the liberal Alliance for Justice, says Trump has released a "dangerous" list. It "includes some of the most extreme conservatives on the federal bench today," she tells the New York Times. "Their opinions demonstrate open hostility to Americans' rights and liberties, including reproductive justice and environmental, consumer, and worker protections. They have ruled consistently in favor of the powerful over everyone else. They would move the needle even further to the right on the Supreme Court."
  • At the staunchly anti-Trump conservative site RedState, Leon Wolf argues that the candidate has released the list to "allay conservative fears," but anybody who believes Trump is likely to actually nominate any of them may have just fallen off the turnip truck. "Trump has lied or flip-flopped about literally everything during the course of this primary," he writes.
  • Michigan Supreme Court Justice Joan Larsen tells the AP that her inclusion on the list came as a "complete surprise." She says she's honored to be included and would definitely be interested in serving, though she won't discuss her opinion of Trump.
  • Another candidate, Don Willett of the Texas Supreme Court, has made numerous tweets mocking Trump, reports Reuters. In one, he jokes about "Darth Trump" building the Death Star. Another is a haiku about Trump choosing Supreme Court nominees. "Who would the Donald name to #SCOTUS? The mind reels. *weeps—can't finish tweet*" he writes.