The White House has reportedly narrowed its list of potential Supreme Court nominees down to five people, and four of them have donated to Barack Obama's political campaigns.
The five federal judges who will be interviewed by the White House for the nomination are federal judges Sri Srinivasan (who has donated $4,250 to Obama), Jane Kelly ($1,500 to Obama), Paul Watford ($1,000 to Obama), Ketanji Brown Jackson ($450 to Obama), and Merrick Garland, who has not donated to Obama.
None of the judges are major political donors and the contributions made to Obama account for the majority of each judge's political giving. The donation from Jackson is the only federal political contribution she made that was large enough to be included in election filings.
Jackson's contribution could be explained by the fact that she worked as a lawyer for Obama's 2008 campaign. On her official questionnaire filed with the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee she disclosed that she “was an election poll monitor for both the primary and general elections on behalf of Lawyers for Change, Obama for America Presidential Campaign."
Obama is in the midst of a battle with Senate Republicans who have vowed not to hold confirmation hearings for any nominee put forward by the White House.
On Thursday, Obama expressed his hope that “cooler heads will prevail and people will reflect on what's at stake here once a nomination is made.”
Sen. Chuck Grassley (R., Iowa), chairman of the judiciary committee, said that none of Obama's nominees will be confirmed.
“Everybody knows any nominee submitted in the middle of this presidential campaign isn't getting confirmed. Everybody. The White House knows it. Senate Democrats know it. Republicans know it. Even the press knows it,” Grassley said during a committee hearing on Thursday.