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Larsen says she would have no trouble ruling against Trump

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Michigan Supreme Court Justice Joan Larsen faced members of the US Senate Wednesday as she seeks a promotion to the federal bench.

Larsen said she’s beholden to the rule of law and not the president who nominated her.

President Trump named Larsen to the Sixth Circuit US Court of Appeals, which ranks just below the US Supreme Court.

Larsen was on Trump’s list of prospective Supreme Court nominees when he ran for president. But Larsen says she doesn’t know how she got on that list, and did not make any promises on how she’d deal with cases.

“I would have no trouble ruling against the president who appointed me, or any successor president, as well.”

“Absolutely not, and if I had been asked, I never would have committed to any such promise.”

Senator Sheldon Whitehouse is a Rhode Island Democrat. Whitehouse said he’s concerned that a right-leaning group funded a media campaign to win support for Larsen’s nomination.

“What did they think they were going to get for their investment in your candidacy for this court, Miss Larsen. Why would they be spending this money if they did not see some return?”

Larsen was named to the court by President Trump, who also has her on a list of potential US Supreme Court nominees.

Rick Pluta is the Capitol Bureau Chief for the Michigan Public Radio Network. He is heard daily on WCMU's Morning Edition and All Things Considered.