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Supreme Court’s future may hinge on election

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A list of those mentioned as potential Obama nominees is growing. Among the youngest on that list are Harvard Law School Dean Elena Kagan, Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick, Harvard Law Prof. Cass Sunstein, and Yale Law School Dean Harold Hongju Koh.

On the other side, any nomination by Senator McCain would have to survive not only a Democratic Senate hostile to a strong conservative but also an aggressive Republican base that chewed up President Bush’s Harriet Miers nomination because she wasn’t considered a heavyweight conservative.

“I think a President McCain would find himself between a rock and hard place,” says Douglas Kendall, president of the Constitutional Accountability Center, a liberal think tank in Washington.

Among those mentioned as potential McCain nominees are US appeals court Judge Michael McConnell, Supreme Court advocate Maureen Mahoney, and former Bush Solicitor General Paul Clement.

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