News / USA

    Obama to Name Supreme Court Justice By End of May

    U.S. President Barack Obama says he hopes to nominate a new Supreme Court justice by the end of May.  The president has met with key Senators from both parties, who will lead the confirmation process.  

    Before meeting with the lawmakers, President Obama said Wednesday he will "certainly" make his choice to replace retiring Justice John Paul Stevens at or before the end of May.

    The president is calling for a Senate confirmation vote before the lawmakers recess in August, so the new justice can join the nine-member court when its new session starts in October.

    "My hope is that we are going to be able to get a Supreme Court nominee confirmed in time for the next session," said the presodent. "As Justice Stevens said, I think it is very important, particularly given the important cases that may be coming before the Supreme Court, that we get this process wrapped up," he said.

    Mr. Obama met with the top Senate Democrat, Majority Leader Harry Reid, and the top Republican, Minority Leader Mitch McConnell.  

    The Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman, Democrat Patrick Leahy, and the committee's leading Republican, Jeff Sessions, also talked with the president about his upcoming nomination.

    After the meeting, Senator Leahy said he wants to keep politics out of the confirmation process as much as possible.

    "I am not looking for a nominee who is there for Republicans or Democrats.  I want somebody who is there for the American people," said Leahy.

    Susan Low Bloch, a professor of law at Washington's Georgetown University, expects opposition Republicans in the Senate to fight the nomination, whoever it may be.  But she believes a nomination will be approved in a timely manner.

    "I do not think the process will be quick, and I do not think it will be quiet, but yes, I do think that the person will be able to take his or her seat by the time the court convenes in October," she said.

    As with most Supreme Court nominations in recent decades, Mr. Obama says the issue of abortion will be "hugely contentious."

    The president says he will not make a nomination based on a candidate's views on the 1973 ruling legalizing abortion.  But he says he will take those views into consideration.

    "I do not have litmus tests around any of these issues, but I will say that I want somebody who is going to be interpreting our Constitution in a way that takes into account individual rights, and that includes women's rights," the president said.

    Justice Stevens announced his retirement on April 9, after 35 years on the high court.  He is the longest-serving of the nine current justices, and at age 90 is the second-oldest justice ever.

    Although he was appointed by Republican President Gerald Ford, Stevens has, in recent years, led the more liberal wing of the court.  

    The White House has not revealed the names of any potential nominees.

    Most Washington media speculation has centered on three possibilities:  U.S. Solicitor General Elena Kagan, federal appeals court judge Merrick Garland, and federal judge Diane Wood.  All three were reported to have been considered for the high court last year.

    Reports say others are also being considered, possibly including some elected officials as well as judges.

    This will be Mr. Obama's second opportunity to fill a Supreme Court opening.  Last year the Senate confirmed his choice of Sonia Sotomayor, making her the court's first Hispanic justice.

    You May Like

    Mother of IS Supporter: Son Was Peaceful, 'Role Model'

    Somali-American Abdirizak Mohamed Warsame pleaded guilty Thursday to charges of conspiring to provide material support to Islamic State militants

    Factions Shift as Civilians Die in Syrian War

    Scenario likely only to further confuse military situation on ground and potentially worsen humanitarian crisis that already has grown to epic proportions

    Presidential Hopefuls Woo Minorities, Evangelicals

    Four GOP candidates to speak at forum at Bob Jones University in Greenville, South Carolina

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Two-thirds of World Faces Water Shortagei
    X
    February 12, 2016 7:31 PM
    Four billion people — or two out of every three on the planet — do not have enough water to meet their basic needs. That is far greater than previously thought, according to a new study that presents a more accurate picture of the problem. As VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports, the findings will help policymakers and the public craft solutions to address the threat.
    Video

    Video Two-thirds of World Faces Water Shortage

    Four billion people — or two out of every three on the planet — do not have enough water to meet their basic needs. That is far greater than previously thought, according to a new study that presents a more accurate picture of the problem. As VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports, the findings will help policymakers and the public craft solutions to address the threat.
    Video

    Video Gateway to Mecca: Historical Old Jeddah

    Local leader Sami Nawar's family has been in the Old City of Jeddah for hundreds of years and takes us on a tour of this ancient route to Mecca, also believed to be the final resting place of Adam's wife, Eve.
    Video

    Video New Technology Aims to Bring Election Transparency to Uganda

    A team of recent graduates from Uganda’s Makerere University has created a mobile application designed to help monitor elections and expose possible rigging. The developers say the app, called E-Poll, will make Uganda's democratic process fairer. From Kampala, VOA's Serginho Roosblad reports.
    Video

    Video As Refugees Perish, Greek Graveyards Fill

    Aid workers on the Greek island of Lesbos say they are struggling to bury the increasing number of bodies of refugees that have been recovered or washed up ashore in recent months.  The graveyards are all full, they say, yet as tens of thousands of people clamor to get out of Syria, it is clear refugees will still be coming in record numbers. For VOA, Hamada Elrasam reports from Lesbos, Greece.
    Video

    Video Russia Bristles at NATO Expansion in E. Europe

    Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov is meeting Friday with the head of NATO after the Western military alliance and the United States announced plans for the biggest military build-up in Europe since the Cold War. Russia has called NATO's moves a threat to stability in Europe. But NATO says the troop rotations and equipment are aimed at reassuring allies concerned about Russia as VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.
    Video

    Video To Fight Zika, Scientists Target Mosquitoes

    Mosquitoes strike again. The Zika virus outbreak is just the latest headline-grabbing epidemic carried by these biting pests, but researchers are fighting back with new ways to control them. VOA's Steve Baragona takes a look.
    Video

    Video Mosul Refugees Talk About Life Under IS

    A top U.S. intelligence official told Congress this week that a planned Iraqi-led operation to re-take the city of Mosul from Islamic State militants is unlikely to take place this year. IS took over the city in June 2014, and for the past year and a half, Mosul residents have been held captive under its rule. VOA's Zana Omar talked to some families who managed to escape. Bronwyn Benito narrates his report.
    Video

    Video Scientists Make Progress Toward Better Diabetes Treatment, Cure

    Scientists at two of the top U.S. universities say they have made significant advances in their quest to find a more efficient treatment for diabetes and eventually a cure. According to the International Diabetes Federation, the disease affects more than 370 million people worldwide. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video NATO to Target Migrant Smugglers

    NATO has announced plans to send warships to the Aegean Sea to target migrant smugglers in the alliance's most direct intervention so far since a wave of people began trying to reach European shores.
    Video

    Video Russia's Catholics, Orthodox Hopeful on Historic Pope-Patriarch Meeting

    Russia's Catholic minority has welcomed an historic first meeting Friday in Cuba between the Pope and the Patriarch of Russia's dominant Orthodox Church. The Orthodox Church split with Rome in 1054 and analysts say politics, both church and state, have been driving the relationship in the centuries since. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.
    Video

    Video Used Books Get a New Life on the Streets of Lagos

    Used booksellers are importing books from abroad and selling them on the streets of Africa's largest city. What‘s popular with readers may surprise you. Chris Stein reports from Lagos.
    Video

    Video After NH Primaries All Eyes on South Carolina

    After Tuesday's primary in New Hampshire, US presidential candidates swiftly turned to the next election coming up in South Carolina. The so-called “first-in-the-South” poll may help further narrow down the field of candidates. Zlatica Hoke reports.
    Video

    Video Smartphone Helps Grow Vegetables

    One day, you may be using your smartphone to grow your vegetables. A Taipei-based company has developed a farm cube — a small, enclosed ecosystem designed to grow plants indoors. The environment inside is automatically adjusted by the cube, but it can also be controlled through an app. VOA's Deborah Block has more on the gardening system.
    Video

    Video Exhibit Turns da Vinci’s Drawings Into Real Objects

    In addition to being a successful artist, Renaissance genius Leonardo da Vinci designed many practical machines, some of which are still in use today, although in different forms. But a number of his projects were never realized — until today. VOA’s George Putic reports.