By BBC News
President Donald Trump has nominated Colorado federal appeals court judge Neil Gorsuch for the US Supreme Court.
If confirmed by the Senate, the 49-year-old would restore the court’s conservative majority, lost with the death of Justice Antonin Scalia.
The Senate Democratic leader has said he has “very serious doubts” about Judge Gorsuch’s nomination.
The court has the final legal word on many of the most sensitive US issues, from abortion to gender to gun control.
Trump said Judge Gorsuch had a “superb intellect, an unparalleled legal education, and a commitment to interpreting the Constitution according to text”.
“Judge Gorsuch has outstanding legal skills, a brilliant mind, tremendous discipline, and has earned bipartisan support,” Trump said.
He was picked from a shortlist of 21 choices, which Trump made public during the election campaign.
Accepting the nomination, he said: “”It is the role of judges to apply, not alter, the work of the people’s representatives. A judge who likes every outcome he reaches is very likely a bad judge, stretching for results he prefers rather than those the law demands.”
Judge Gorsuch is a so-called originalist, meaning he believes the US Constitution should be followed as the Founding Fathers intended.
If successful, his nomination will restore the 5-4 conservative majority on the nine-seat high court.
Protests against Trump’s choice were held outside the Supreme Court following the announcement.