Toomey gives approval of Trump's Supreme Court nominee, Brett Kavanaugh

Steve Tawa
July 26, 2018 - 3:22 pm
Sen. Pat Toomey

Nabil K. Mark/Centre Daily Times/MCT/Sipa USA

WASHINGTON, D.C. (KYW Newsradio) — After a 40-minute meeting in his Washington, D.C. office, Republican Sen. Pat Toomey said he will "enthusiastically support" President Donald Trump's nominee, Judge Brett Kavanaugh, for the Supreme Court.

Toomey said Kavanaugh has "the character, intellect, experience and judicial philosophy to be a great Supreme Court justice," adding that Kavanaugh understands a judge should apply the law neutrally. "Including the Constitution, based on the written text of the law and the Constitution on what the words actually say — not what he wishes they had said or what someone else may have written. He will not impose his personal policy preferences."

When asked about Kavanaugh’s views on the authority of the executive branch in light of special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election, Toomey said Kavanaugh was very clear that a president must be accountable, and no president was above the law.

He believes the judge has a solid reputation and resume, ranging from clerking for Justice Anthony Kennedy to working in the office of independent counsel Kenneth Starr and the George W. Bush White House.

"And in every one of these roles, he's really shined and had extraordinary success," he added. "He's written over 300 decisions as a judge. So there's an enormous amount of information about how he views the law and decides cases."

Trump nominated the 53-year-old Kavanaugh, a Washington, D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals judge who was appointed by former President George W. Bush.

Toomey noted they did not specifically discuss Roe v. Wade, even though he feels the case was "wrongly decided."

"I'm pro-life. However, unlike my Democratic colleagues, I don't have set of policy litmus tests for a judge or justice, precisely because that is not a role of a judge or justice," he explained.

It's up to Congress and the president to establish policy, he said.

"Precisely because we're held accountable to the voters, as we should be. So I'm confident Judge Kavanaugh will take a very serious look at precedence," he said. 

Toomey expects hearings over the summer, as well as a "bipartisan vote to confirm Judge Kavanaugh," which will take place in September or October.