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President Trump's list of nominees to replace outgoing Justice Anthony Kennedy on the Supreme Court skews decisively conservative, per a measure that scores judges on a liberal-conservative spectrum.

Why it matters: Chances are that whomever Trump appoints will be solidly conservative, tipping the balance of the court.

Expand chart
Data: Epstein, Martin, and Quinn, 2016; Chart: Andrew Witherspoon and Harry Stevens/Axios

In November, the Trump administration released its list of 25 potential Supreme Court nominees. Of those, 12 were included in an analysis by political scientists Lee Epstein, Andrew D. Martin, and Kevin Quinn which placed them on an ideological spectrum called the “Judicial Common Space."

Conservative justices receive scores from 0 to 1, while liberal justices receive scores from –1 to 0. Clarence Thomas, currently the most conservative justice, scored at 0.725. Sonia Sotomayor, the most liberal justice, scored –0.521.

None of the potential nominees analyzed in the study are as conservative as Thomas, but all of them score solidly among the conservative wing. One outlier is Thomas Hardiman, a judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, who scored as an ideological moderate.

A score of 0 signifies a swing judge who is as likely to favor liberal policies as conservative ones. Kennedy, who just announced his retirement, scored a –0.066. Though nominated by Republican Ronald Reagan, Kennedy often sided with the Court's liberal wing. With his retirement, four liberal justices remain, including 79-year-old Stephen Breyer and 85-year-old Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

Go deeper

2021 economy boomed at fastest rate in 37 years

Source: Bureau of Economic Analysis

The U.S. economy surged ahead with a 6.9% annual growth rate in the final months of 2021 and achieved the strongest growth over an entire calendar year since 1984.

Driving the news: New GDP numbers from the Commerce Department show a remarkable acceleration in economic activity, much faster than the 5.3% growth rate analysts expected.

The Fed isn't the only problem investors are worried about

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The Federal Reserve will be raising rates, just as the economy is slowing. The markets hate that.

Why it matters: The ugly start to the stock trading year doesn't just reflect Fed-induced agita — investors are also worried about a growth slowdown.

3 hours ago - Health

White House says Obamacare sign-ups hit record

Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra speaking in the White House in December 2021. Photo: Jim Watson/AFP via Getty Images

The White House said Thursday that a record 14.5 million Americans have signed up for health insurance through Obamacare marketplaces since Nov. 1, including more than 10 million enrollments through HealthCare.gov.

Why it matters: Last year's stimulus bill contained substantial investments in the program, including increased subsidies for people who don't receive health insurance from an employer or through Medicare or Medicaid.