Trump Rallies His Base With List of Right-Wing Ideologues He Will Consider for Supreme Court 

President Donald Trump announced a list of potential Supreme Court nominees at the White House Sept. 9, 2020.

President Donald Trump released a list of potential nominees for future Supreme Court vacancies Wednesday, returning to a 2016 campaign strategy that proved popular with right-wing leaders.

In 2016, religious-right leaders used Trump’s pledge to give them an anti-choice Supreme Court as justification for telling ​conservative Christians who may have had qualms about supporting the amoral Trump that they needed to vote for him anyway.

This year’s list is also heavy with judges who are right-wing ideologues, but it includes ​a new​ feature​ designed to excite right-wing activists: ​the inclusion of three U.S. senators from the far-right wing of the GOP​, Ted Cruz, Tom Cotton, and Josh Hawley.

The three senators—more familiar to right-wing activists than any judge or law professor—were highlighted in a Trump campaign email ​ Wednesday and in a tweet from Trump campaign lawyer and Liberty University Falkirk Center fellow Jenna Ellis:

Anti-choice and anti-LGBTQ leaders jumped in to praise Trump’s list. The Family Research Council’s Tony Perkins celebrated the “generational impact” of Trump’s court picks.

The Christian Broadcasting Network rounded up some right-wing reaction:

“President Trump’s latest Supreme Court list is filled with all-stars,” stated Susan B. Anthony List President Marjorie Dannenfelser. “The list reflects the president’s firm and proven commitment to only nominating Supreme Court justices who will respect the Constitution and the inalienable right to life.”

Alliance Defending Freedom President Michael Farris stated, “Any judge or justice should interpret the Constitution faithfully, which means protecting the right to life and the right to peacefully speak, live, and work consistent with one’s religious beliefs. The president has promised to appoint justices committed to doing just that.”

While Hawley responded to the announcement by saying he wasn’t interested in serving on the court, Cotton tweeted, “It’s time for Roe v. Wade to go,” earning cheers from the Heritage Foundation’s anti-LGBTQ and anti-choice Ryan Anderson:

​Meanwhile, Ted Cruz took the opportunity to plug his new book about the Supreme Court.


In announcing his list, Trump unconvincingly cloaked his catalog of anti-healthcare, anti-equality, anti-choice potential nominees in the rhetoric of justice and equality. “Every one of these individuals will ensure equal justice, equal treatment, and equal rights for citizens of every race, color, religion, and creed,” he said​ at the White House Wednesday.  “Together, we will defend our righteous heritage and preserve our magnificent American way of life.”

Trump also returned to the fearmongering rhetoric that is increasingly marking his campaign:

If this extreme movement is granted a majority on the Supreme Court, it will fundamentally transform America without a single vote of Congress. Radical justices will erase the Second Amendment, silence political speech and require taxpayers to fund extreme, late-term abortion.

They will give unelected bureaucrats the power to destroy millions of American jobs. They will remove the words ‘under God’ from the Pledge of Allegiance. They will unilaterally declare the death penalty unconstitutional, even for the most depraved mass murderers. They will erase national borders, cripple police departments, and grant new protections to anarchists, rioters, violent criminals, and terrorists.