Trump to choose Supreme Court justice nominee on Feb. 2

WASHINGTON, Jan 25 (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump said on Wednesday he will make his choice to fill the vacancy on the U.S. Supreme Court on Feb. 2 as he seeks to restore the conservative majority on the Supreme Court.

Trump announced the date in Twitter message one day after meeting with key U.S. senators and promising to unveil his nominee to fill the vacancy left by the death of conservative Justice Antonin Scalia nearly a year ago.

Three U.S. appeals court judges are among those under close consideration by Trump, who took office last Friday and had said he would act on a nominee next week.

RELATED: Trump's potential Supreme Court justice picks

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Trump potential Supreme Court justices

Judge Thomas Lee

Image courtesy of Utah Courts 

Judge Federico Moreno

Image Courtesy of  University of Miami school of Law 

UNDATED PHOTO - This undated photo, courtesy of the Alabama Attorney General's office, shows Alabama Attorney General William H. Pryor Jr. Amidst overwhelming controversy, the Senate Judiciary Committee July 30, 2003 approved, 10-9, Pryor's nomination to be a judge on the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. The nomination would grant him a lifetime seat on the Court of Appeals. (Photo by Alabama Attorney General's Office/Getty Images)

Judge Amul Thapar

Image courtesy of Vanderbilt University 

Judge David Stras

Image courtesy of th Minnesota Judicial Branch

Judge Don Willett

Image courtesy of Texas Civil Justice League 

Judge Robert Young

Image courtesy of the Michigan Courts 

Allison Eid of Colorado

(Photo By Andy Cross/The Denver Post via Getty Images)

Diane Sykes of Wisconsin

(Photo by George Bridges/MCT/MCT via Getty Images)

Steven Colloton of Iowa

(Photo via US Government)

Thomas Hardiman of Pennsylvania

(Photo via Roy Engelbrecht/Wikipedia)

Raymond Kethledge of Michigan

(Photo via By SPDuffy527 (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons)

 Senator Mike Lee of Utah

REUTERS/Jim Urquhart

Judge Neil Gorsuch (far Right)

(Photo by David Scull/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

Judge Margaret A Ryan 

Image Courtesy of Birmingham Southern College

Edward Mansfield of Iowa

Image Courtesy of The American Law Institute

Keith Blackwell of Georgia

Image Courtesy of Georgia Supreme Court 

Timothy Tymkovich of Colorado

Image Courtesy of the Supreme Court of Colorado 

House Manager Charles Canady on Capitol Hill January 25.
Justice Joan Larsen of the Michigan Supreme Court and a former clerk for Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia speaks at his memorial service at the Mayflower Hotel March 1, 2016 in Washington, DC. Justice Scalia died February 13 while on a hunting trip in Texas. (Photo by Susan Walsh-Pool/Getty Images)
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Appointment as a Supreme Court justice requires Senate confirmation for the lifetime post. Trump's fellow Republicans control the Senate with a 52-48 majority, but Democrats could potentially try to block the nomination using procedural hurdles.

On Tuesday, Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer said he told Trump in the meeting that Democrats would fight any nominee they consider to be outside the mainstream.

SEE ALSO: Obama's poor record with the Supreme Court and how Trump may fare

Trump is in position to name Scalia's replacement because the Republican-led U.S. Senate last year refused to consider Democratic President Barack Obama's nominee, appeals court judge Merrick Garland.

The current frontrunners include three conservative jurists who were appointed to the bench by Republican former President George W. Bush: Neil Gorsuch, a judge on the Denver-based 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals; Thomas Hardiman, who serves on the Philadelphia-based 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals; and William Pryor, a judge on the Atlanta-based 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

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