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Supreme Court Nomination Quickly Becomes An Issue For Missouri Senate Race

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Luke X. Martin/KCUR 89.3 and Sen. Claire McCaskill/Flickr - CC
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Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley is expected to win the Republican nomination for Missouri's U.S. Senate seat and take on Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill in November.

Minutes after President Donald Trump announced Brett Kavanaugh was his pick to fill retiring Justice Anthony Kennedy's place on the U.S. Supreme Court, Missouri Attorney General and U.S. Senate candidate Josh Hawley began needling Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill.

In a series of tweets, Hawley — the frontrunner for the Republican nomination — praised Kavanaugh and predicted that McCaskill would "reflexively oppose" the nomination.

In a brief statement, McCaskill said she would "thoroughly examine" Kavanaugh's judicial record and pointed out she has voted for over two-thirds of Trump's judicial nominees.

The Republican primary to decide whether Hawley will take on McCaskill, or whether voters will choose Austin Petersen, Tony Monetti or Courtland Sykes is Aug. 7. Campaign finance reports through June 30 are due out soon.

Monetti said on Twitter that he believes the country needs "originalist judges" and called Kavanaugh a "solid pick." Petersen linked to a story about Kavanaugh on a Libertarian website, saying "Next up. Confirmation!"

Nicolas Telep is KCUR's morning news intern. You can reach him on Twitter: @NDTelep.

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