[JURIST] After a protracted Senate battle over judicial nominees [JURIST report], President Bush Tuesday pledged to consult [press conference transcript] with members of the Senate on an upcoming nomination to the Supreme Court:
I'm obviously going to spend a lot of time reviewing the records of a variety of people and looking at their opinions and their character, and will consult with members of the United States Senate at the appropriate time.This is the first time Bush has spoken of the possibility of a vacancy on the Court since Chief Justice William Rehnquist [Wikipedia profile] announced last fall that he is suffering from thyroid cancer. Rehnquist is widely expected to retire at the end of the current session later this month. Reuters has more.
I know there's been a lot of talk about consultation between the White House and the Senate, and we do consult -- obviously, we consult on district judges -- and that we listen to their opinions on appellate judges -- "their" opinions being the opinions from the home state senators, as well as others.
I look forward to talking to members of the Senate about the Supreme Court process to get their opinions, as well, and will do so -- and will do so. But, obviously, it's -- I told the American people I would find people of a certain temperament that would serve on the bench, and I intend to do that, but we will consult with the Senate.