Republican Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas wrote an opinion piece on Thursday arguing for fellow Republican Sen. Mike Lee of Utah to fill the Supreme Court vacancy left behind by Justice Anthony Kennedy as he retires.
Cruz described the opportunity for President Donald Trump to choose a nominee as a “defining moment,” noting that while all presidents are remembered for whom they elevate to the Supreme Court, those memories are not always looked favorably upon.
In the piece, which was published by Fox News, he cites some past justices who were nominated by a Republican, yet failed to uphold a constitutionalist interpretation after serving on the highest court. Cruz, at least in part, blamed the lack of knowledge on nominees’ judicial views prior to their nomination.
“Most presidents are forced to gamble on a nominee they do not truly know — someone who has spent a lifetime outside the public eye. Presidents must pore over the thinnest bodies of evidence on these people, trying to discern their convictions and ability from scattered cases and the recommendations of others. It’s a risk, when what a president really needs is a sure thing,” Cruz wrote. “President Trump, however, has lucked out. He has a sure thing, battle-tested, ready, and willing to serve: Sen. Mike Lee.”
The Texas senator urged Trump to heed the warnings of past Republican presidents’ mistakes and embrace a nominee who is a proven principled constitutionalist. (RELATED: Ted Cruz Proposes Adding Two More Names To Trump’s SCOTUS List)
“Mike Lee has a proven track record as a formidable advocate for the separation of powers, for federalism, for the Bill of Rights, and for a limited judicial role that adheres to originalism and textualism in judicial interpretation,” Cruz continued.
Cruz touted Lee’s legal acumen, strong convictions and admiration of his fellow public servants, which would allow for a seamless confirmation.
“When it comes to this Supreme Court nomination, President Trump can have it all. He can bring home another huge victory for conservatives with success being certain,” the senator said. “And he can honor his promise to the American people to nominate justices ‘in the mold of Scalia and Thomas.’ No other nominee fits that mold like Mike Lee.”
Trump will announce his Supreme Court nomination on July 9.
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