President Donald Trump has picked a favorite of the Republican legal establishment, Judge Brett Kavanaugh, for the Supreme Court.
With Kavanaugh, Trump is replacing a swing vote on the nine-member court with a staunch conservative already being cheered by top Republican senators.
Here's what central Illinois' congressional delegation has to say about Kavanaugh's nomination.
Sen. Dick Durbin
"The next justice will likely be the deciding vote on whether Americans will keep affordable health insurance for pre-existing conditions, whether women will lose the freedom to make their own health care choices, and whether we have a Constitution that protects the rights of all Americans or just big corporations and wealthy elites," said Durbin, the senior Democratic senator from Illinois.
"Brett Kavanaugh is a judge who consistently favors big business and undermines protections for consumers, workers, women, and the environment. Replacing Justice Kennedy’s swing vote with a far-right jurist like Judge Kavanaugh could change the rules in America. Just as troubling, in light of the ongoing Russia investigation, Judge Kavanaugh has expressed staunch opposition to criminal investigations of sitting Presidents.
"With a subservient Republican Congress and a far-right Supreme Court, there is a real risk that the worst impulses of the Trump presidency will go unchecked. The stakes for this nomination are historic," Durbin said.
Sen. Tammy Duckworth
"We can’t ignore the reality that Donald Trump wants to take us back to a time when insurers could refuse coverage to people with pre-existing conditions or that he promised to only nominate Justices who would put the government back in between women and their doctors," said Duckworth, a Democrat from Illinois.
"Whoever replaces Justice Kennedy will play a critical role in the lives of all women and every single American," she added. "Moving forward, I will thoroughly review Judge Kavanaugh’s rulings, evaluate his qualifications and look for him to make it clear to the American public that he would be independent, not simply a rubber stamp for Donald Trump’s whims, if he hopes to earn my support."
The newfound urgency to fill Justice Kennedy’s #SCOTUS seat from many of the same people who refused to even consider President Obama’s nominee is transparent opportunism that represents everything Americans hate most about politics today.
— Tammy Duckworth (@SenDuckworth) July 10, 2018
Rep. Rodney Davis
While Supreme Court nominations are the job of the Senate, House members are also weighing in.
"(Kavanaugh) is an extremely qualified candidate who should be considered based on merit, not politics," said Davis, a Republican from Taylorville who represents part of Bloomington-Normal. "I hope our senators will honor this and allow the confirmation process to move forward."
Rep. Darin LaHood
"With more than 300 published opinions, Judge Kavanaugh has become a thought-leader among his peers on the appellate courts and deeply respected by the Supreme Court. Having known him and his family personally and witnessing his proven track record, I am excited to have his measured perspective added to the bench," said LaHood, a Republican from Dunlap who also represents parts of Bloomington-Normal.
"I certainly hope that the Senate moves quickly and decisively to confirm him, as I have every confidence that Judge Kavanaugh will continue to serve our nation faithfully and maintain the honor and dignity of the Supreme Court."
People like you value experienced, knowledgeable and award-winning journalism that covers meaningful stories in Bloomington-Normal. To support more stories and interviews like this one, please consider making a contribution.