Donald Trump has nominated Brett Kavanaugh, a U.S. Court of Appeals judge for the District of Columbia, to the Supreme Court, following weeks of suspenseful deliberation.
WATCH: On Monday, U.S. President Donald Trump chose Brett Kavanaugh as a replacement for retiring Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy
Kavanaugh was put on the federal bench while former president George W. Bush was in office and served as a law clerk to retiring Justice Anthony Kennedy between 1993 and 1994.
A number of justices have hailed from the U.S. Court of Appeals, though some conservatives have expressed concerns about Kavanaugh’s commitment to social issues such as abortion, and noted his time served under former president George W. Bush as evidence that he is a mere establishment choice.
Kavanaugh received his bachelor’s degree from Yale University in 1987 and went on to receive his law degree from Yale Law School in 1990. He was said to be a strong favourite by Trump leading up to the announcement.
Trump announced his nomination on Monday evening. Trump said during the announcement that in addition to his political contributions, Kavanaugh coaches Catholic Youth Organization (CYO) basketball, serves meals to needy families and tutors children at local elementary schools.
“There is no one more qualified,” the president concluded, and asked for a “quick and speedy” confirmation.
Judge Brett Kavanaugh said during his comments Monday night that he is “humbled” to have been selected by the president for the Supreme Court.
WATCH: Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh says if confirmed by Senate he will keep an open mind in every case
Kavanaugh told the president as he took the microphone to accept his nomination: “I am grateful to you,” and “I’m humbled by your confidence in me.”
He also says he is “deeply honoured” to be nominated to fill the seat of retiring Justice Anthony Kennedy, for whom he clerked.
Kavanaugh says that if he’s confirmed, he “will keep an open mind in every case” and “always strive to preserve the Constitution of the United States and the American rule of law.”
He also thanked his parents and talked about his young daughters, whose basketball teams he coaches. He says his daughters’ teammates call him “Coach K.”
WATCH: U.S. President Donald Trump announces Brett Kavanaugh as Supreme Court nominee
Furthermore, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell echoed the president’s praise for Kavanaugh by saying the judge is a “superb” Supreme Court pick and that senators should put partisanship aside in considering him.
While Democrats have already begun calling Kavanaugh too conservative, McConnell argued that senators should give him the “fairness, respect and seriousness that a Supreme Court nomination ought to command.”
WATCH: Trump says no one in U.S. is more qualified than Brett Kavanaugh for SCOTUS
The Senate’s top Democrat, Chuck Schumer, retorted however that Trump’s nomination puts abortion rights and health-care protections for women “on the judicial chopping block.” He added that in selecting Kavanaugh, Trump is making good on his pledge to “punish” women for their choices.
— With files from the Associated Press