| Florida Times-Union
President Trump’s Supreme Court ‘short list’ – States of America
President Trump released his short list to fill any future Supreme Court vacancies and he’s doubling down on conservatives. Will it work to entice conservative voters?
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — President Donald Trump said during a campaign rally in Jacksonville on Thursday that he will announce a woman as his Supreme Court pick on Saturday and he challenged Democratic nominee Joe Biden to release his own list of potential Supreme Court candidates.
Trump said Biden doesn’t want to release a list because he is beholden to “the left.”
Biden has said the winner of the November election should fill the seat left vacant by the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
“If he puts an extremist into that position, he loses everything that’s like normal,” Trump said. “If he goes the other way, he loses the left. I’d love to have him put out the list. I’d like to see what happens. I can already tell you, the people on that list, it would not be good. It would not be pretty. That would be the end.”
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Trump did not drop any hints about who he will announce on Saturday beyond saying the selection will be a woman. It would be Trump’s third appointment to the Supreme Court.
Trump spoke for about an hour at the outdoor rally at Cecil Airport.
As Trump tries to repeat his 2016 win in Florida, the Jacksonville area will once again be key, said Michael Binder, director of the University of North Florida Public Opinion Research.
Binder said that, like 2016, Trump needs to run up big victory margins in the counties surrounding Jacksonville. Even if Trump loses Duval County, he just needs to keep the margin close, Binder said. In terms of Northeast Florida, a tie in Duval “essentially would be a win for Trump,” Binder said.
Looking forward to the debate Tuesday with Biden, the first face-to-face showdown between them, Trump simultaneously said Biden is “the lowest-energy individual I’ve ever seen” and also an experienced debater “who has been doing it for 47 years.”
“Maybe he’ll be like Superman for 15 minutes,” Trump said.
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With Florida a pivotal state, Trump said Hispanics are supporting his re-election. He said he has released hurricane relief aid to Puerto Rico, which still is recovering from Hurricane Maria in 2017, and he said he is moving to revive the pharmaceutical manufacturing on the island.
He criticized Biden for the deal the United States made with Cuba to move toward normalizing relationships when Biden was vice president in Barack Obama’s administration.
“My opponent stands with socialists and communists,” Trump said. “I stand with the proud people of Cuba, Nicaragua, Venezuela.”
A confirmed crowd size was not immediately available, however, First Coast News reported the venue holds “close to 15,000 people.” Bleachers and folding chairs were packed tightly together, limiting the ability for people to socially distance.
Masks were rarely spotted, nor were they required. But the Trump campaign did give masks to each attendee that walked in. Temperatures were also checked upon entrance.
City of Jacksonville officials said they’d “prefer social distancing,” but since the event was outdoors, no city ordinances about COVID-19 safety were violated.