President Donald Trump announced Monday evening that he would be nominating Brett Kavanaugh for the Supreme Court, likely changing the character of the highest court for generations to come.
Who is Brett Kavanaugh?
Brett Kavanaugh is 53 years old, worked in the solicitor general’s office in the George H.W. Bush administration, and was a clerk for Justice Anthony Kennedy. He also worked under Kenneth Starr and helped draft the impeachment against former President Bill Clinton.
NBC News confirmed the pick before Trump's announcement.
According to a source that spoke to the Wall Street Journal, Trump was impressed with Kavanaugh's "Yale pedigree, tenure on the court, and body of writings."
Kavanaugh currently sits on the Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, and was appointed to that court by President George W. Bush in 2006. The nomination was approved by a Senate vote of 57-36.
Kennedy announced his retirement just 12 days ago, and many were surprised when President Trump said he would be making his decision so quickly.
"I've often heard that other than matters of war and peace, this is the most important decision a president will make," Trump said at the opening of the announcement.
Trump had promised to choose Supreme Court nominations from a list comprised with the guidance of the Heritage Foundation and the Federalist Society, both conservative think tanks.
Democrats have already indicated that they would oppose any nomination by the president. Critics have pointed to what they saw as unfair tactics by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) in stalling on former President Obama's nomination, Merrick Garland, until after the election.
The surprise Trump victory resulted in Neil Gorsuch replacing Antonin Scalia on the highest court.