U.S. Supreme Court Justice Replacement: 5 Qualities President Obama Is Looking For In Antonin Scalia Replacement

A U.S. Supreme Court justice replacement is on the horizon, and President Obama is looking for the right one to take Antonin Scalia’s seat. It was revealed on Wednesday that Obama is seeking a nominee with specified qualities.

According to the New York Times, President Obama listed what he’s looking for in a Supreme Court justice replacement after Scalia’s death.

What are the five qualities that President Obama is seeking in a Supreme Court justice replacement? SCOTUSBlog had the letter in full on its site that listed what the president is mindful of in a nominee.

  1. Obama’s first requirement for a candidate in the Supreme Court justice must be “eminently qualified.” Obama clearly states that “an independent mind, rigorous intellect, impeccable credentials, and a record of excellence and integrity” are characteristics of a jurist in the nation’s Supreme Court. Obama wants a nominee who’s mastered the law and is able to “provide clear answers to complex legal questions.”
  2. Obama said the person he appoints for this critical role must be “someone who recognizes the limits of the judiciary’s role; who understands that a judge’s job is to interpret the law, not make the law.” The president goes on to write that he wants a judge on the Court who has no “particular ideology or agenda, but rather a commitment to impartial justice, a respect for precedent, and a determination to faithfully apply the law to the facts at hand.”
  3. A Supreme Court judge must be able to analyze certain cases when the “law is not clear.” This is another trait Obama is looking for what that will help in shaping his decision as to who he’ll appoint as Antonin Scalia’s replacement. President Obama expresses that he seeks a judge who has a “keen understanding that justice is not about abstract legal theory, nor some footnote in a dusty casebook. It’s the kind of life experience earned outside the classroom and the courtroom; experience that suggests he or she views the law not only as an intellectual exercise, but also grasps the way it affects the daily reality of people’s lives in a big, complicated democracy, and in rapidly changing times. That, I believe, is an essential element for arriving at just decisions and fair outcomes.”
  4. A “sterling record” is another factor behind Obama’s decision as to who’ll take on the vital role in the Supreme Court. He also wants the candidate to have a “deep respect for the judiciary’s role.”
  5. Obama lists “an understanding of the way the world really works.”

President Obama is actively looking for a U.S. Supreme Court judge as Antonin Scalia's replacement (Photo Credit: AgnosticPreachersKid/Wikimedia Commons). President Obama is actively looking for a U.S. Supreme Court judge as Antonin Scalia’s replacement [Image via AgnosticPreachersKid/Wikimedia Commons]Obama concludes his letter by revealing those are “what I’m considering as I fulfill my constitutional duty to appoint a judge to our highest court.”

President Obama hopes that Senators will move rapidly in their debates after considering the judge that he’ll appoint for the U.S. Supreme Court. He remarks that this will allow the Court to better serve the American people “at full strength.”

President Obama has appointed two Supreme Court justices during his seven years in office.

ABC News reports that Obama’s post came out just one day following Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Republicans on the Senate Judiciary Committee claimed not to hold hearings or a vote on the president’s nominee.

Obama, however, retorted at those threats and denounced claims made by Republicans, saying that Democrats would handle the situation similarly if they were in the same position.

“The easier thing to do is to give into the most extreme voices in your party and stand back and do nothing,” Obama said. “But that’s not our jobs. Our [job] is to fulfill our constitutional duties.”

[Photo by AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais]