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Quiet preparations are underway within conservative legal circles and the White House counsel’s office in the event that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg retires, two sources familiar with the process tell The Daily Caller.

The 85-year-old Ginsburg did not appear for oral arguments at the Supreme Court on Monday, missing the first session in her 25 years on the court for reasons of ill health.

Ginsburg is currently recuperating from recent surgery to remove cancerous nodules from her lungs, marking her third bout with the disease.

“Gingerly preparations are underway, not just for Ginsburg but for any SCOTUS retirement,” a source directly involved in the Supreme Court nominations of Justices Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh told TheDC.

Another source emphasized to TheDC that the quiet preparations are all that is realistically needed in case of a vacancy on the court because much of the required infrastructure already exists within the White House.

Both sources said that the White House counsel’s office and its conservative legal allies have now been through two successful confirmation processes, and that they have developed an intimate and professional feel for how to run the process again, if necessary.

Trump is particularly proud of his handling of the Gorsuch and Kavanaugh nominations, a source close to the White House said, noting that the president views proper handling of the Supreme Court as a necessary part of maintaining the support of his voters.

The opening would be the first under White House counsel Pat Cipollone, who assumed the position after Don McGahn. Cipollone is a longtime Washington lawyer intimately familiar with the conservative legal eco-system.

“By appointing Pat, Trump made sure he has a White House counsel who is both able to handle the investigation and a movement conservative philosophically aligned with the base of the party,” American Conservative Union Chairman Matt Schlapp told TheDC.

Pressed on Trump’s lack of public discussion of any potential Supreme Court nomination, Schlapp noted that “Trump has figured out there are some things you keep close to the vest. He likes to be the explainer-in-chief but understands there’s a downside to sharing too much.”

John Malcolm, Senior Legal Fellow at the Heritage Foundation, similarly told TheDC that Cipollone has “very bright movement conservatives” around him as staffers, and expressed confidence in his preparations to fill a vacancy on the court.

Malcolm speculated that if Ginsburg’s seat becomes vacant, “there would be a lot of pressure to appoint a woman, I would think that one person the president would seriously look at would be Amy Coney Barett.”



  1. timothy rookey

    January 9, 2019 at 2:46 am

    Amy Coney Barett would be the perfect replacement for Ruth Buzzy Ginsburg. I pray that the President appoints her to the High Court when the time comes.

    • Michael Gallagher

      January 9, 2019 at 1:29 pm

      I just do not think she has enough experience on the Bench. The Confirmation Process will also be a circus again.

  2. Emilio

    January 9, 2019 at 2:54 am


    • Rick

      January 9, 2019 at 1:26 pm

      If Trump wasn’t president she would step down but because of her liberal position she doesn’t want a conservative judge on the bench..

  3. Cecelia Henderson

    January 9, 2019 at 3:23 am

    Do the America people have to watch Politicians die? When illness makes a Politician or SC Justice makes that person incapable of handling the pressures and/or demands of their job, it’s time to put them on disability and find someone that can do the job. It was extremely frustrating seeing McCain show up to vote, and then listening to him bashing the President from his death bed. Be reasonable, if they’re terminal, it’s time for them to resign or retire. I can totally understand sticking with Salice when he was shot, because we knew he was coming back and he wasn’t 85 years old.

  4. Buckwheat7

    January 9, 2019 at 3:39 am

    She is nothing more than a left wing politican. Time for her to go for many reasons.

  5. Steve

    January 9, 2019 at 5:05 am

    Ginsburg has been an anti-Constitutional “justice” that has had a complete , worthless career & life , supporting the NWO criminals against America ! As such , she is a complicit criminal herself !

  6. donfitness

    January 9, 2019 at 5:18 am

    I really like Ms Amy Barett.

  7. Rebecca Holstine

    January 9, 2019 at 5:56 am

    I had thought maybe Pres. Trump would appoint Amy Barett this last time. So if he does this time, I will be satisfied. She is a good one. And would be one hell of an improvement over RBG.

  8. Proud vet

    January 9, 2019 at 6:24 am

    When people are too stupid to retire on their own, and God is finished using them for his purpose, he will retire them! Make no mistake about it

  9. abolishliberalism

    January 9, 2019 at 12:50 pm

    So what now, we all just sit here and wait for RBG to die before she can be replaced? What happens if one of these SC Justices gets in a car wreck that leaves them in a coma? do they STILL keep their position? isnt there some sort of law that states that if a Justice cannot perform their duties for the country then they can be replaced? A Lifetime appointment should only last as long as the person can perform their duties, not actually mean they keep their appointment until they are actually dead! RBG needs to be retired for the good of the Country, believe it or not folks, there are SOME things that HAVE to be done for the good of the Country and the American people!

  10. Robert Trotta

    January 9, 2019 at 2:24 pm

    She is WAY PAST retiring! She can’t even stay awake. Now she’s recuperating from cancer treatments! Hang it up Ruth. Enjoy the rest of your life even though being a justice looks like the only exciting thing you have in your life. Hope you recuperate long enough to enjoy your golden years!

  11. Paul Lee

    January 9, 2019 at 3:47 pm

    We need judges that rule by the constitution not by political view as liberals do. It’s interesting that conservatives are usually the ones that abide by the constitution and that liberals do not in most instances. Gee wiz – ? Why is that ???

  12. fred

    January 9, 2019 at 6:40 pm


  13. Meyndert

    January 9, 2019 at 7:34 pm

    RBG learned a lesson that every democrat need. You kan plan as much as you like on how you will oppose the President but at the end it is GOD that allow or stop it.

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