Trump, Republican on rapid pace to fill Supreme Court justice seat

On average, a Supreme Court justice nomination takes 70 days to pass through the Senate; there are less than 45 days until Election Day.
3:46 | 09/20/20

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Transcript for Trump, Republican on rapid pace to fill Supreme Court justice seat
But we begin here with Ruth Bader Ginsburg. The political battle now over replacing her on the supreme court, and what it means for the presidential campaign. New York governor Andrew Cuomo ordered state landmarks to be lit in blue in honor of her. "Time" magazine releasing a special commemorative cover featuring the late justice, and overnight, this vigil where senator Elizabeth Warren led the crowd in a chant of I will fight to support Ginsburg's stances on dreamers and affordable care. ABC's Rachel Scott is joining us now from outside the supreme court in Washington, D.C. With the very latest. Rachel, good morning. Reporter: Whit, good morning. There is a sense of grief and anticipation playing out here in outside the supreme court, a growing memorial as so many grapple with the loss of Ruth Bader Ginsburg. The president, though, is pressing forward announcing he will nominate a woman in the coming days to fill her seat. Overnight, hundreds flooding the supreme court to honor Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Ruth Bader Ginsburg is one of my heroes. Reporter: A moment of silence in the shadow of the U.S. Capitol where a fierce political battle over her replacement is less than 45 days out from election day, president trump racing forward urging Republicans to fill the seat without delay. I think the process could go very, very fast. Reporter: We've learned senate majority leader Mitch Mcconnell has already spoken to the president about the next steps, promising his nominee will receive a vote on the senate floor. And the president is now narrowing down his choices telling his supporters in north Carolina he will nominate a woman. I will be putting forth the nominee next week. It will be a woman. Reporter: Sources tell us three female judges are on his short list with conservative judge Amy coney Barrett emerging as an early front-runner. She was pressed op her stance on roe V. Wade during her confirmation to serve on the conservative bench. The dogma lives loudly within you, and that's of concern. It's never appropriate for a judge to impose that judge's personal convictions whether they derive from faith or anywhere else on the law. Reporter: Not every Republican is on board with that speedy timeline. One of them, senator Susan Collins. In a statement she said, I do not believe that the senate should vote on the nominee prior to the election. Democrats agree. Let me be clear that the voters should pick the president and the president should pick the justice for the senate to consider. Reporter: Republicans can only afford to lose three votes, and a small group of moderate and vulnerable senators could split from their party to stop it. Now we have some senators that, you know, think of it. I won't say it. I won't say it, Susan. I won't say it, Susan. Reporter: A day of mourning quickly turned political. Less than 24 hours after Ginsburg's death. Spotlighting the divide in America. I think us being here sends a message not just to honor her, but to really send a message to the GOP saying, you know, we are here as a people to stand with her. Reporter: Protesters lining the streets outside of Mcconnell's home demanding the senate vote be delayed. The vacancy injecting a new sense of urgency into an already chaotic and divisive election year. The senators have to figure out if they have enough votes by election day. They would have to move at a rapid pace. On average, it takes about 70 days for a nomination to get through the senate, and we are less than 45 days out from election day. Eva? Rachel Scott for us there at the supreme court.

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