WASHINGTON (REUTERS) - President Donald Trump intends to nominate conservative federal appeals court judge Amy Coney Barrett to fill the vacancy on the US Supreme Court following the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, CNN reported on Friday (Sept 25), citing Republican sources.
Trump has said he would announce on Saturday his choice to replace Ginsburg, the liberal icon who died on Sept 18 at age 87.
Barrett, 48, was appointed by Trump to the Chicago-based 7th US Circuit Court of Appeals in 2017 and is known for her conservative religious views.
Supreme Court justices are given lifetime appointments.
The White House declined to comment.
If confirmed, Trump's nominee would give conservatives a commanding 6-3 majority on the court at a time of intense political divisions in the United States.
Barrett has been viewed as a frontrunner throughout, along with fellow federal appeals court judge Barbara Lagoa.
Barrett previously served as a clerk to conservative Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, who died in 2016.
Trump's nominee has what appears to be a clear path to Senate confirmation before the Nov 3 presidential election, with Republicans holding a 53-47 majority in the chamber and only two senators in his party indicating opposition to moving forward with the process.
Democrats have objected to the Senate acting on Trump's nominee in light of the decision by Republicans in the chamber in 2016 to refuse to consider Democratic President Barack Obama's nominee to replace Scalia after he died during a presidential election year.
Ginsburg, a champion of gender equality and various liberal causes, made history again on Friday as the first woman and first Jewish person to lie in state in the US Capitol.
Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden attended the ceremony a day after Trump, a Republican, was greeted with jeers and boos by a nearby crowd as he visited Ginsburg's flag-draped coffin outside the Supreme Court building.