Trump’s Supreme Court


Here’s the list of potential Trump nominees,:

Donald Trump, the presumptive Republican nominee for president, has released a list of 11 potential Supreme Court justices he plans to vet to fill the seat of late Justice Antonin Scalia if he’s elected to the White House.

Trump’s picks include Steven Colloton of Iowa, Allison Eid of Colorado and Raymond Gruender of Missouri.

Also on the list are: Thomas Hardiman of Pennsylvania, Raymond Kethledge of Michigan, Joan Larsen of Michigan, Thomas Lee of Utah, William Pryor of Alabama, David Stras of Minnesota, Diane Sykes of Wisconsin and Don Willett of Texas. Trump had previously named Pryor and Sykes as examples of kind of justices he would choose.

Reading through the TPM comments on the post there on this subject, it seems like we’ve got some cherce* ones here.

Any of our legal types care to chime in?


Image:  William Hogarth, The Court c. 1758.   I know that I’ve used this before.  But it’s just perfect whenever the topic of GOP jurisprudencerecklessness comes up.

70 replies
  1. 1
    burnspbesq says:

    Dear f’in God. Far worse than anyone could ever have imagined.

  2. 2
    🌷 Martin says:

    Which website did he crib that list from? Know that, and you’ll know what the play is.

  3. 3
    rikyrah says:

    I’m depending on those in the know to tell me about this list. I’m sure they are absolute horrors.

  4. 4
    Nina says:

    Some tweets from that article:

    That time @WilliamShatner flew Trump Airlines.

    — Justice Don Willett (@JusticeWillett) March 11, 2016

    Can’t wait till Trump rips off his face Mission Impossible-style & reveals a laughing Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

    — Justice Don Willett (@JusticeWillett) August 27, 2015

  5. 5
    rikyrah says:

    @🌷 Martin:

    I read over at TPV that it was given to him by the Heritage Foundation.

  6. 6
    Mike J says:

    Here’s a tweet from somebody on the list:

    Justice Don Willett Verified account @JusticeWillett
    Donald Trump haiku—

    Who would the Donald
    Name to #SCOTUS? The mind reels.
    *weeps—can’t finish tweet*

  7. 7
    🌷 Martin says:

    @Mike J: That’s so awesome. He disqualified himself.

  8. 8
    🌷 Martin says:

    @rikyrah: If so, do we need any further analysis?

  9. 9
    LAO says:

    @Mike J:

    I used to follow Willett on Twitter — his admiration for Cruz made me unfollow. But for a Conservative Texas appellate judge — he was relatively amusing. All things considering.

  10. 10
    Chris says:

    John Yoo’s not on the list?

  11. 11
    LAO says:


    Far worse than anyone could ever have imagined.

    Really? You thought the list of Uber Conservative Judges provided by Heritage Foundation was going to be better than this? A failure of imagination, I say.

  12. 12
    Ryan says:

    @rikyrah: This is why the Right is circling the wagons, they staff the White House with as many of their people as they can and limit Trump-induced damage.

  13. 13
    benw says:

    Trump’s original list, with annotations:

    Egon Spengler – “love him, seems like a really bright guy, just a huge brain!”
    Scooby-Doo – “great dog, just a great dog, he and his gang always solve the mystery, how do they do it?”
    Tonald Drump – “just a huge, huge, classy guy, love him!”
    George Zimmerman – “don’t know much about him, but he’s been huge in the news lately, huge!”
    Ivenka Trump – “just get a load of her! what. a. lady.”
    Joffrey Lannister – “what a kid, just amazing, reminds me of myself at that age, so classy!”

  14. 14
    Trollhattan says:

    Holy moly, life imitating art imitating the end of the world. That’s too funny.

  15. 15
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @Ryan: Like von Papen and Hindenburg did?

    /apologies for the Godwin.

  16. 16
    Joyce H says:

    From back in March –

    Asked about what kind of nominees he would appoint to the Supreme Court, Trump said he’d choose “people that would look very seriously” at Hillary Clinton’s “email disaster.”

    In other words, this toxic clown has no notion in the world what the Supreme Court actually does.

  17. 17
    Amir Khalid says:

    I’m surprised that Trump didn’t put Statler and Waldorf on his Supreme Court shortlist.

  18. 18
    sharl says:


    John Yoo’s not on the list?

    Dammit Chris, you done spoiled my moment of darkly humorous musing…

  19. 19
    bemused says:

    @Joyce H:

    Whew, this from Trump the twitter disaster.

  20. 20
    Betty Cracker says:

    No Judge Judy?

  21. 21
    JCJ says:

    @Amir Khalid:

    Take a break from the Liverpool match to post a comment?


  22. 22
    Mnemosyne says:

    I would say I’m surprised Judge Judy isn’t on the list, but I have heard she’s quite liberal in real life and treats her employees well, so she’s going nowhere with Trump.

    ETA: @BettyCracker — Ha!

  23. 23
    chopper says:

    what about that Judge Dredd guy? he always gets the job done.

  24. 24
    I'mNotSureWhoIWantToBeYet says:

    Um, isn’t it standard practice for a candidate not to say who they would appoint? Even if this is a Heritage list, why on Earth would he read cite the names?

    Oh, here’s the NYTimes take:

    Donald J. Trump, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, released a list of potential Supreme Court nominees on Wednesday as part of an effort to quell concerns that he would not select conservative jurists.

    The unusual move comes as Mr. Trump is looking to unify the Republican Party behind him and win over critics who remain skeptical about the seriousness of his candidacy. While some Republicans who oppose Mr. Trump have considered supporting Hillary Clinton or sitting out the election, he has regularly reminded them that the future of the Supreme Court is at stake.

    Oh, it’s all an effort to shore-up support for McConnell and the rest of the troglodytes who are holding up Garland’s vote. And to try to distract people from the rest of the Teabagger nonsense, probably.

    With any luck, this will be shot down as a transparent ploy.


  25. 25
    burnspbesq says:

    Alas, Sevilla has equalized.

  26. 26
    germy says:

    @Mnemosyne: I’ve heard the opposite about her. She goes on fox and complains about big government and lazy moochers.

    I tuned in once and she was berating a young lady who was collecting disability after surviving a brain tumor. “So you don’t have a job?? What a country!”

  27. 27
    I'mNotSureWhoIWantToBeYet says:

    @I’mNotSureWhoIWantToBeYet: read cite.



  28. 28
    mdblanche says:

    @efgoldman: I thought Cole was Statler and Waldorf.

  29. 29
    Amir Khalid says:

    Damn. Liverpool have given their lead away. Always, always, the defence falls asleep at the wrong moment.

  30. 30
    Fcb says:

    Oh, please. He may have had his pixies cobble this list together while he slept, but you know the only name he’s thinkin’ is Judge Judy.

  31. 31
    Splitting Image says:

    In the meantime, here is a reminder that a Clinton victory will ensure that Merrick Garland, or someone similar, will be seated on the Court, giving Ruth Bader Ginsburg a majority to work with and ensuring that as senior associate justice she, rather than John Roberts, will be deciding who writes the opinions on all of those 5-4 party line decisions that will (still) be coming down the pipe.

    (Well, technically Kennedy will still outrank her, but the others won’t need to water down a liberal decision to make sure he signs on to it.)

    People often complain that they are always being forced to vote against something and they never have anything to vote for. I say there is plenty to vote for this time out.

  32. 32
    Poopyman says:

    @Amir Khalid: He’d need 2 vacancies. I’m guessing his first thought would be to have a chat with Clarence.

  33. 33
    LAO says:

    Here’s a particularly repugnant story about Judge Pryor. He sure sounds like a charming guy.

  34. 34
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @Amir Khalid: Did you stay up to watch the match, or get up to watch it? It’s mighty early in the day for you.

  35. 35
    Amir Khalid says:

    @Gin & Tonic:
    I stayed up. I’m a medical retiree, and my time is my own.

  36. 36
    Bob In Portland says:

    This is terrible. I hope the Democrats nominate someone who isn’t hated by half the country!!!!

  37. 37
    Amir Khalid says:

    And now Sevilla have the lead. Gaah!

  38. 38
    SRW1 says:

    Oh, Oh. Sevilla goes 2-1 up. Klopp on his way to another runner-up medal?

  39. 39
    dedc79 says:

    Following up on Cole’s NFL analogy below, I think Trump has adopted the NFL’ s PR model. The NFL has become America’s Sport in part by dominating the sports news cycle 365 days a year, and they’ve done that by doing something “newsworthy” each and every day. Granted it hasn’t always been something favorable, but it doesn’t matter.

    I mean, they’ve managed to milk a month’s worth of attention out of the NFL Draft (which is about as useless to watch as Wolf Blitzer reporting on KY primary results) even though it falls right in the middle of the first month of baseball season, the NHL playoffs, and the NBA playoffs.

    Trump similarly sets out to do something news worthy every day of the year. Today it was announcing fantasy Supreme Court picks. Tomorrow it will be something else.

  40. 40
    Joyce H says:


    Trump similarly sets out to do something news worthy every day of the year.

    I saw a news story somewhere today that said that plans were in the works (from the Trump campaign, of course) to have Trump speak every night of the GOP Convention. Isn’t that special?

  41. 41
    Amir Khalid says:

    Liverpool 1-3 Sevilla. That’s it. No Champions League football next season.
    Woe is me!

  42. 42
    dedc79 says:

    @Joyce H: Yup, I’ve seen similar reports, and it’s for the same reason. Well, that and his giant ego.

  43. 43
    Origuy says:

    It’s lunchtime here so I went out to watch the game. On the advice of humboltblue I decided to root for Liverpool. That was clearly a mistake but I don’t know if it was mine or his. The game was tied when I left work.

  44. 44
    chopper says:

    @Joyce H:

    the people who predicted the convention would be a week-long trump infomercial were absolutely spot-on.

  45. 45
    Mary G says:

    Hopefully Hillary’s team can put together a selection of these people’s most wingnuttiest statements and hang them around Trump’s neck.

  46. 46
    dedc79 says:

    @Amir Khalid: I only cared to the extent i’d been told it impacts the pot that my spurs will be in for next year’s Champions League. Apparently it would’ve been better for Spurs if Liverpool had won. So, thanks for nothing.

  47. 47

    @Joyce H: Is it wrong that this struck me as funny?

    Yeah, I guess it is since he’s so horrible. But it would be just such a Trumpian way of allotting stage time.

  48. 48
    JPL says:

    If this list doesn’t unite the democratic party, nothing will.

  49. 49
    Poopyman says:

    And in other judicial news (sorta):

    George Zimmerman appears to have sold the gun he used to kill Trayvon Martin four years ago, bringing an end to the latest controversy to swirl around the notorious former neighbourhood watch leader.

    Zimmerman, who shot and killed the unarmed black teenager during an altercation at his Florida housing estate in February 2012, looks set to collect $138,900 for the Kel-Tec PF-9 9mm handgun after bidding closed midday on the website

  50. 50

    @chopper: Maybe he’ll sell steaks!

  51. 51
    eric says:

    @JPL: there will be time to unite after Hitlery is done stealing the nominations from the real democrat in the primary!

    wait for it…………………………………………………………………………………..

  52. 52
    NonyNony says:

    @Poopyman: He found some sucker willing to pay $138K for a used gun that Google tells me you can purchase new for less than $300?

    This is why the right wing will never disappear – there are too many idiots just begging to have their money taken away from them. (Of course in this case the guy is named “John Smith” so who knows – it may be a fake account created to fuck with Zimmerman).

  53. 53
    Mike J says:


    Egon Spengler – “love him, seems like a really bright guy, just a huge brain!”

    And not the chick version!

  54. 54
    starscream says:

    Trump is going to win this thing, isn’t he? The media will spend the next six months telling everyone he’s a serious human being, and this stupid country will fall for it all over again.

  55. 55
    Immanentize says:

    @I’mNotSureWhoIWantToBeYet: That is so weird, Scott, because none of these folks are quality, in the Lila sense. They are basically promoting political hack judges. And two woman judges (for diversity sake and one is the wife of another candidate) who are really quite horrible. I have not looked closely at all of them, but I will tomorrow.

  56. 56
    sharl says:

    {sound of clattering tickertape} ***UPDATE***UPDATE***UPDATE*** {…fade out sound…}


    John Yoo’s not on the list?

    Welp, while Yoo isn’t on the list {insert ironical sadface}, the man has weighed in. Via Popehat on twitter:

    Trump judges likely to approve crushing of the testicles of our enemies’ children

    Yoo at NRO:

    Everyone on the list is an outstanding legal conservative. All are young, smart, and committed. They would excel in any comparison with anyone whom Hillary Clinton would appoint to the Supreme Court. Several of the possibilities, such as Tom Lee of Utah, Allison Eid of Colorado, and David Stras of Minnesota, are former law clerks of Justice Clarence Thomas, while others, such as Steve Colloton of Iowa and Joan Larsen of Michigan, clerked for Justice Antonin Scalia. They are joined by other well-known judicial conservatives, such as Diane Sykes, Don Willet, Ray Kethledge, and Bill Pryor.

    These names are a Federalist Society all-star list of conservative jurisprudence. In the interest of full disclosure, I will note that I count several of them as colleagues and friends. It is a good sign that, on one of a president’s most important decisions, Trump clearly turned to the Federalist Society and the Heritage Foundation for advice.

    You just keep being you, Yoo.

  57. 57
    Gindy51 says:

    @Gin & Tonic: @starscream: I fear you are correct.

  58. 58
    Immanentize says:

    @Gindy51: Not

  59. 59
    benw says:

    @starscream: DON’T PANIC

    I don’t doubt they’ll try. The US has been suckered before, but Reagan and W could at least walk the “serious” walk when the media held the bar low and didn’t ask any hard questions. Trump can’t even do that. I have (qualified) faith in (a sizable enough block of) the American voters that Trump will lose (badly).

  60. 60
    Immanentize says:

    @LAO: That guy is horrible — one of the Bush appointees not vetted — a real death penalty racist when AG in Alabama. I hope he is not on your panel!

  61. 61
    LAO says:

    @Immanentize: Yikes. I didn’t even think of that.

  62. 62
    burnspbesq says:


    I have not looked closely at all of them, but I will tomorrow.

    Keep an airsickness bag handy.

  63. 63
    Joel says:

    @Bob In Portland: Like Vladimir Putin!!1!!11

  64. 64
    shortstop says:

    OMG, I saw “cherce” and immediately thought of Pat and Mike. A longtime household favorite here (both the phrase and the movie).

  65. 65
    pat says:

    It’s funny, they rave about Obama destroying this country, and yet that is exactly what they propose to do. From “drown it in the bathtub” to “repeal obamacare,” it’s all about turning the country back, out of the 21st century.

    It’s always projection.

  66. 66
    bushwortspresidentever says:

    This list makes Scalia look like a moderate. But I’m sure a Sanders supporter can assure me that Trump will be better than Hillary.

  67. 67
    debbie says:


    The $65,000,000 bid didn’t pan out?

  68. 68
    D58826 says:

    From 1995 to 1996 Steven Colloton was an associate independent counsel in the Office of Independent Counsel Kenneth Starr.

    Well he sounds like a real winner.

  69. 69
    J R in WV says:


    ‘From 1995 to 1996 ”

    From 12-01-95 to 01-31-96 is little different from 01-02-95 to 12-29-96 … only the difference between 2 months and two years.

  70. 70
    momus says:

    A fine collection of fifth rate legal minds. Sykes, the Walker toadie is especially egregious.

Comments are closed.