Eh… he’s a fairly ordinary leftist jurist – especially on things like the 2nd Amendment – who hangs out with the Senators at DC cocktail parties. Obama is 75% sure that the Republicans in the Senate are going to stick to their guns (as they should) and not confirm him, but in the event that they do, this allows Obama to also pick a new justice for the DC Circuit Court. Remember that the DC Circuit Court is arguably the second most important federal court since it decides on so many cases regarding the federal government.

WASHINGTON — President Obama on Wednesday nominated Merrick B. Garland to be the nation’s 113th Supreme Court justice, choosing a centrist appellate judge who could reshape the court for a generation and become the face of a bitter election-year confirmation struggle.

In selecting Judge Garland, 63, a well-known figure in Washington legal circles who has drawn praise from members of both parties, Mr. Obama dared Republican senators to ignore public pressure and make good on their promise to block consideration of any high court nominee until after the next president is chosen.