President Obama will be looking for a Supreme Court nominee to replace retiring Justice John Paul Stevens who will "affect the Court in a strategic way," with CBS News Legal Correspondent Jan Crawford said today on "Washington Unplugged."
While Mr. Obama's first nominee to the Court, Justice Sonia Sotomayor, was largely political, the president will now think about "how the nominee and the new justice would affect the internal dynamics of the Supreme Court," Crawford told Unplugged host Bob Orr.
Stevens sent a letter to the president this morning announcing his retirement. While Stevens retirement has been expected for several months, the timing of his announcement was strange for the Justice that Crawford described as "independent" and "eccentric."
"He decided on his own that this was the time to go," said Crawford, "and he was going to do it on a Friday morning."
Crawford listed the prospective favorites to replace Stevens, including two women President Obama may consider. Crawford said Seventh Circuit Federal judge Diane Wood and Solicitor General Elena Kagan are potential female candidates, while Washington, D.C. Circuit Judge Merrick Garland is a strong candidate to ascend to the bench.