Trump questions Ruth Bader Ginsburg's wish not to be replaced

Over the weekend, the president announced his plans to nominate a woman to fill late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg's seat on the Supreme Court.
President Trump Returns To White House After Trip To Minnesota
U.S. President Donald Trump returns to the White House on Sept. 18, 2020, in Washington, D.C. Trump traveled to Minnesota for a campaign event earlier in the day, before learning of the death of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.Win McNamee / Getty Images
/ Source: TODAY

President Donald Trump has responded to late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg's final wish that her place on the Supreme Court not be filled "until a new president is installed."

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On "Fox & Friends" Monday, the commander in chief was asked about Ginsburg's comments, which she reportedly told her granddaughter Clara Spera days before her death due to complications of pancreatic cancer.

"I don't know that she said that, or was that written out by Adam Schiff, Schumer and Pelosi," Trump said on the show, referencing three of his prominent, Democratic opposers.

"I would be more inclined to the second. OK, that came out of the wind and sounds so beautiful, but that sounds like a Schumer deal or maybe a Pelosi or Shifty Schiff," he added. "So that came out of the wind. Maybe she did, or maybe she didn't. The bottom line is we won the election, we have an obligation to do what's right and act as quickly as possible."

Trump, over the weekend, revealed his plans to choose a woman to replace Ginsburg, and on Monday, he said that he's narrowed his list to five people and will announce the final name Friday or Saturday.

"We want to pay respect," he told the "Fox & Friends" hosts. "It looks like we will have probably services on Thursday or Friday. ... We should wait until the services are over for Justice Ginsburg."

During Monday's interview, the president also discussed two of the judges he said he's considering as replacements, Amy Coney Barrett and Barbara Lagoa. He added that he expects the Senate vote to take place before the election and that the process should go "very quickly."

If all goes according to Trump's plan, this would be in direct opposition to what Justice Ginsburg told Spera she wanted to happen with her replacement.

"My most fervent wish is that I will not be replaced until a new president is installed," Ginsburg said, according to NPR. Ginsburg died Friday night at age 87, according to a press release shared by the Supreme Court, surrounded by family at her home in Washington, D.C.

When Ginsburg's close friend, late Justice Antonin Scalia, died in 2016, also an election year, then-President Barack Obama named Merrick Garland, the chief judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, to fill the empty seat. However, GOP leaders, including Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, blocked Obama's pick. Garland was never confirmed, and in 2017 the seat was filled by Neil Gorsuch.