May 8 (UPI) -- President Donald Trump is expected to nominate 10 judges to federal court positions on Monday, a senior White House official said.
With Neil Gorsuch successfully confirmed to the Supreme Court, Trump must fill 129 openings on lower federal courts. The unusually high number of vacancies will allow him to remake the federal judiciary. The 10 names to be announced Monday are likely the first in a wave of regular nominations, The New York Times reported.
Two on the list were among 21 potential Supreme Court nominees, and are expected to draw extra scrutiny from Democrats because of it. They are Michigan Supreme Court Justice Joan Larsen, who will be nominated to the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals, and Justice David Stras of the Minnesota Supreme Court, nominated to the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals. Three others named to appellate courts include Amy Coney Barrett to the 7th Circuit, John Bush to the Sixth Circuit and Kevin Newsom to the 11th Circuit.
Four more will be nominated to serve in federal district courts: Dabney Friedrich in the District of Columbia, Terry Moorer in Alabama, David Nye in Idaho and Scott Palk in Oklahoma. Damien Schiff will be nominated to the U.S. Court of Federal Claims, Politico reported Monday.
All have solid conservative credentials, and liberal groups have express unease over a judicial system filled with Trump appointees. Nan Aron of the liberal advocacy organization Alliance for Justice, told The New York Times that "The Trump administration has made clear its intention to benefit from Republican obstructionism and to pack the federal courts with ultraconservatives given a stamp of approval by the Federalist Society," a reference to the conservative advocacy group.
"We'll be scrutinizing the records of these nominees very carefully."
Trump's only court appointment thus far, other than Gorsuch, has been Amul Thapar, who awaits confirmation to the 6th Circuit.