I don't buy that argument, though. First, let's keep in mind that seven of the nine justices currently on the court were nominated by Republican presidents. Of the majority in the two decisions noted above, three of the five were Justices Kennedy (nominated by Reagan), Souter (nominated by G.H.W. Bush), and Stevens (nominated by Ford). Kennedy is usually a wildcard, while Souter and Stevens are usually liberal. In any case, those three justices prove that there is no guarantee that a Republican president will nominate a conservative judge.
Second, this is McCain we are talking about here. McCain said in early 2008 that he had gotten the message on immigration, but since he has the Republican nomination all but sewn-up, he is now back to his
The youngest of the conservative justices currently on the Court is 53, the oldest is 72, and their average age is 61. The youngest of the liberal justices currently on the Court is 68, the oldest is 88, and their average age is 75. The remaining swing vote justice is 71.
The odds are that any openings on the Supreme Court would come from the ranks of the liberal members; keep in mind that oldest conservative is only four years older than the youngest liberal, and sixteen years younger than the oldest liberal. That makes the worst case scenario one of keeping the ideological make-up of the Court that same as it currently is for the next four years.
For Conservatives, neither presidential candidate looks good for the make-up of the Supreme Court. Since most of the conservative justices are relatively young, however, it is also unlikely that either presidential candidate will make the make-up of the Supreme Court any worse than it already is.
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