Klobuchar Won’t Release Names of Potential Judicial Nominees

Liberal groups preparing secret lists of nominees in preparation for 2020

Democratic presidential hopeful US Senator from Minnesota Amy Klobuchar gestures as she speaks during participate in the first Democratic primary debate of the 2020 presidential campaign season hosted by NBC News at the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts in Miami, Florida, June 26, 2019. (Photo by JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images)

Senator Amy Klobuchar (D., Minn.) told NPR that she would not reveal the names of her potential judicial nominees unless she won the presidency.

"I think that you interview people, you make decisions — you can't do that as a candidate. You can't vet them like you should. As a candidate you don't have the FBI," Klobuchar said.

The New York Times reported last month that liberal activists were identifying potential judicial vacancies and possible replacements. The initiative, named Building the Bench, is designed to help a Democratic president start filling judicial vacancies immediately upon taking office. There are nearly 100 judges nominated by Presidents Barack Obama, Bill Clinton, and Jimmy Carter who could open up vacancies as soon as inauguration day.

The Judicial Crisis Network will spend $1.1 million on national ads calling on Democrats to release the names of judicial nominees they are considering. President Donald Trump released the names of potential Supreme Court nominees during the 2016 election. Trump used the list to fill the vacancy left after the death of Justice Antonin Scalia in 2016 with Neil Gorsuch.

Carrie Severino, the chief counsel and policy director of the Judicial Crisis Network, called on Klobuchar and other candidates to release their lists of nominees on Monday.

 

Klobuchar has also not opposed the possibility of packing the Supreme Court, joining eleven other Democratic candidates who have expressed interest in the idea. "You always want to look at all ideas, but I think right now the most reasonable thing is to win the elections and to try to stop the bad judges," Klobuchar said.