While the Merrick Garland nomination is stalled in the Senate, conservative think tanks are busy at work on a 2017 SCOTUS nominee contingency plan. Their man? Senator Mike Lee.
While campaigning in Utah last month, Senator Cruz floated the idea of Lee for SCOTUS, saying, “he would look good there.” No word yet on whether Trump would nominate Lee for SCOTUS though.
Sen. Lee would be the absolutely best case scenario for strict constructionists, constitutionalist, conservatives, and libertarians alike.
Not only did Lee made Heritage’s SCOTUS wish list, he has a great reputation with his colleagues on both sides of the aisle.
James Hohmann of The Washington Post dug into the Mike Lee for SCOTUS campaign:
1. He has the right pedigree: Six years ago, fueled by tea party anger, he toppled Sen. Bob Bennett at a GOP state convention. His father, Rex Lee, was Ronald Reagan’s solicitor general. After graduating from Brigham Young University Law School, the senator clerked for Samuel A. Alito Jr. when he was on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 3rd Circuit and then again after Alito’s elevation to the Supreme Court. Lee was an assistant U.S. attorney in Salt Lake City and general counsel for then-Gov. Jon Huntsman before running for office himself.
2. He’s incredibly young: Lee is just 44. That means he could squeeze four or more decades out of a lifetime appointment.
3. He is dependably conservative. Grass-roots leaders are adamant that future GOP nominees have a long paper trail to avoid confirming stealth moderates. They still feel burned by David Souter, Sandra Day O’Connor and John Paul Stevens.
Lee would be a SCOTUS appointment dream come true, but first Republicans have to win the White House. It would also be helpful if they didn’t kill down ballot races that would have a bearing on confirmation. And then they still have to kill the Garland nomination once and for all.
But a girl can dream, right?
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