Inside the room were officials from the White House, Senate GOP leadership and the outside groups that have spent months researching the records of Trump’s potential picks and are now prepared to unload at least $10 million in ads backing the nominee—much of it directed at Senate Democrats up for election in 2018 in states Trump carried.
The session was informal and introductory — many around the room were only meeting for the first time — but attendees agreed upon the enormity of the undertaking before them. “The Supreme Court,” as one person who was at Friday’s gathering put it, “is a big fricking deal.”…
Behind the scenes, Trump’s team has tried to lay the groundwork for a smooth confirmation. One official familiar with the process said that either White House Counsel Don McGahn or Vice President Mike Pence have spoken to almost every Democratic member of the Senate Judiciary Committee to sound them out on potential picks. White House legislative affairs director Marc Short is managing the Hill outreach efforts.
White House counsel Don McGahn has continued his task of vetting those under consideration. During the presidential transition, Trump had a legal team of five or more people working out of the seventh floor of the official transition offices researching and preparing for the Supreme Court nomination, according to another person familiar with the matter.