Speed Reads

kennedy retires

Who will be Trump's next Supreme Court pick? This chart might hold the answer.

All eyes are on President Trump, who is preparing to replace retiring Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy with his second pick for the nation's highest court. Because this is not the president's first rodeo, though, anxious onlookers can actually get a pretty good idea of the type of judge Trump might be considering — by looking at his shortlist from last time. "It will be somebody from that list," Trump said Wednesday. "They will come from that list of 25 people."

Of Trump's 25 potential Supreme Court nominees in 2016, 12 were included in an ideological analysis by political scientists Lee Epstein, Andrew D. Martin, and Kevin Quinn, Axios reports. Of those potential nominees, only one — sitting Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah) — was rated as being more conservative that Justice Neil Gorsuch, although three others (Diane Sykes, Margaret Ryan, and Raymond Kethledge) were about equally as conservative. Trump's most liberal potential nominee included in the analysis, Thomas Hardiman, fell somewhere between Kennedy and Justice John Roberts in the center of the spectrum.

Trump has said he wants a Supreme Court pick who will serve for "40 years, 45 years," and he is reportedly looking at candidates in their 50s, or ideally 40s. That makes Sykes an unlikelier pick (she is 60) and Lee a "favorite" (he is just 47). Explore the whole analysis at Axios here.