WASHINGTON, D.C. — President Trump told reporters that the search for Supreme Court Associate Justice Anthony Kennedy’s replacement will begin “immediately” amid news of Kennedy’s retirement. Mr. Trump made the remarks as he met with Portugal President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa Wednesday.
Mr. Trump said Kennedy is a man he has “great respect for” calling him a “great justice” of the Court with “great vision” and “tremendous heart.” Kennedy notified Mr. Trump in a letter Wednesday, telling him that effective July 31, he would “end my regular active status as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court, while continuing to serve in a senior status.”
“We will begin our search for a new Justice will begin immediately,” he said, adding that he aims to “pick somebody who will be as outstanding” as Kennedy was. The president said he is looking to pick from the list of 25 nominees that was released when Mr. Trump made his last pick to fill a vacancy with Justice Neil Gorsuch. He said the list of names included “highly educated, highly intelligent people.”
Mr. Trump and de Sousa are expected to discuss addressing global conflicts and promoting economic prosperity, according to the White House.