President Donald Trump told reporters on Friday that he would announce his release to replace Justice Anthony Kennedy on July 9 – a choice that he will.
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Trump made the comments aboard Air Force One and more that will meet with two contenders in Bedminster, New Jersey this weekend. He said he wants to meet with six or seven candidates but has narrowed his list to five people, including two women, before announcing his nominee. He said it was a highly talented, very brilliant, mostly conservative judges group. "
"Well we've got great people, you know, we've got 25 pretty outstanding people." I like them all but I've got it down to about five, "Trump told reporters on Friday.
When asked if he was looking for someone who would overturn Roe v. Wade, Trump said he would not be asking about the landmark abortion case.
ABC News has compiled a list of the most likely contenders for Trump's short list, according to research and conversations with legal experts and sources.
ABC News' Supreme Court contributor Kate Shaw said Trump has broken credentials and conservative track records.
Judge Thomas Hardiman
Hardiman, 52, is a judge on the U.S. Trump's sister Maryanne Trump Barry is sitting on a senior judge's floor. By all accounts, he was a runner-up for the spot that ultimately went to Neil Gorsuch.
Hardiman has been on the Third Circuit, which includes New Jersey, Delaware, Pennsylvania, and the U.S.. Virgin Islands, since 2007 and what a Pennsylvania district court judge that. In high school in Massachusetts, Notre Dame on a scholarship. He received his law degree from Georgetown University and was employed at a number of firms in Washington, D.C. and then Pittsburgh before being nominated to the federal bench by President George W. Bush.
Hardiman would bring a degree of diversity to the court ̵
He's been involved in multiple cases related to high-profile issues. In the 2013 case Drake v. Filco, Hardiman argued that a new jersey had to "demonstrable need" before receiving a handing violate the Second Amendment, dissenting to the Third Circuit's ruling that upheld the law. In another dissent that year, he wrote: "I [heart boobies", that's what they did.
Judge Brett Kavanaugh
Kavanaugh, 53, is known as a conservative star on the D.C. Circuit. He clerked for Kennedy and before that for Judge Alex Kozinski on the Ninth Circuit. He worked for Special Counsel Ken Starr during the Clinton administration and then in various roles at George W. Bush's White House.
He has sat on the D.C. Circuit since 2006 after a contentious confirmation process that took three years after Democratic senators raised concerns that his work was too partisan.
Kavanaugh was born in Washington, D.C. and grew up in Maryland. He received his law degree from Yale Law School and thus received undergraduate degrees from Yale.
Judge Joan Larsen
Larsen, 49, which has recently been confirmed to the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals and previously served on the Michigan Supreme Court from 2015 until earlier this year.
Before serving as a judge, Larsen was on the University of Michigan's Law School faculty for more than a decade. She worked as a deputy assistant attorney general in the George W. Bush administration. Larsen is a registered Republican and ran as a Republican to retain her seat.
Her law degree is from Northwestern, where she was first in her class.
Larsen served in the Justice Department's Office of Legal Counsel during the George W. Bush administration, where she was a Deputy Assistant Attorney General.
A former clerk for Justice Scalia, Larsen wrote in a February 2016 New York Times op-ed that "it's difficult to imagine anyone filling the gap" he left. She was so pleased to speak at the Mayflower Hotel – one of the three former clerks to do so.
Larsen has not been on the federal bench for a long time, so she has not been involved in any hot-button issues. She recused herself from the 2016 recount litigation in Michigan, citing her inclusion on Trump's short list as a reason people might doubt her impartiality.
Judge Amy Coney Barrett
Barrett, 46, which has recently confirmed to be the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals in Indiana. Before ascending to the bench, Barrett was a law professor at Notre Dame, South Bend, IN, where she focused on constitutional law, federal courts, and civil procedure. She attended law school at Notre Dame and clerked for Justice Antonin Scalia.
Her confirmation was attracting some fireworks – in particular with Senator Dianne Feinstein, who told Coney Barrett that "the dogma lives loud in you," leading to criticism that Feinstein's comment was biased against Catholics.
Judge Amul Thapar
Thapar, 48, which was recently confirmed to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit; before that, he served as a district court judge for the Eastern District of Kentucky beginning in 2007.
He was reportedly interviewed (including by the President) as a finalist for the position.
Thapar was born in Detroit, Michigan, attended Boston College and then the University of California-Berkeley for law school. Thapar is a former U.S. Pat. Attorney and attorney in private practice. He was the first federal district court judge of South Asian descent, and now the second court of appeals judge of South Asian descent (after Sri Srinivasan).
In one of his most notable cases, United States v. Walli, Thapar Overseas The Trial of Three Anti-nuclear Activists Who Trespassed on Federal Government Property and Engaged in Peaceful Protests after a jury convicted them Thapar declined the reverse the convictions.
Megan Rice, at 82-year-old now. The Sixth Circuit reversed the sentences, and remanded for resentencing.
ABC News Supreme Court contributor Kate Shaw contributed to this report.