President Donald Trump has already appointed one Supreme Court justice, and is reportedly telling people he believes he will appoint three more.
Multiple sources told Axios’ Jonathan Swan that Trump is openly predicting he’ll be able to fill four Supreme Court seats as president.
One of Trump’s signature victories as president has been the appointment of Justice Neil Gorsuch, who filled a seat left vacant by the death of Justice Antonin Scalia in 2016. The open seat caused controversy, as Scalia died during Barack Obama’s presidency. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell worked to allow the next president to fill the position.
Justice Anthony Kennedy — who is 81 years old — is rumoured to be thinking about retirement. Trump, according to Axios, also thinks he’ll be able to replace Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Sonia Sotomayor, citing their health.
Talking about Ginsburg, one source told Axios, Trump said, “What does she weigh? 60 pounds?” Ginsburg is 84 years old.
Trump has talked about Sotomayor’s Type 1 diabetes, according to Axios, telling the source, “Her health … no good. Diabetes.”
Sotomayor was appointed by Obama and is one of the younger justices on the court at 63 years old.
If Trump was able to replace Kennedy, Ginsburg, and Sotomayor, he could radically change the makeup of the Supreme Court.
Kennedy was appointed by Republican President Ronald Reagan and is a moderate conservative, often providing the deciding vote on 5-4 decisions.
Both Ginsburg and Sotomayor were appointed by Democrats — Bill Clinton and Obama, respectively — and are considered liberal justices. Even replacing one would allow Trump to shift the balance of the court to the right.
Justice Stephen Breyer, another liberal, is 79 years old.
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.