President Donald Trump called former President George W. Bush on Monday afternoon to inform him that Brett Kavanaugh was going to be the pick for the Supreme Court, Freddy Ford, Bush’s chief of staff, confirmed to CNN.
“They spoke, and President Bush appreciated the call and congratulated him on the outstanding choice,” Ford said.
Separately, a source with knowledge said this was not the first call between the two men since Trump took office. They also spoke shortly after the inauguration, the source told CNN.
On Monday evening, Trump named Kavanaugh as his pick to fill the vacancy left by Justice Anthony Kennedy’s decision to retire.
Trump told 30 Republican senators Monday that he had spoken with Bush about Kavanaugh, who worked in his White House, according to a Republican familiar with the call.
Kavanaugh served in the Bush administration as associate White House counsel and later as staff secretary.
The paper trail tied to Kavanaugh’s time in the administration has already become central to the fight over his nomination in the Senate.
CNN has previously reported that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein sent a request on Tuesday to the US attorneys’ offices around the country asking for help with reviewing documents in connection with the nomination, according to a source familiar with the request.
CNN’s Laura Jarrett contributed to this report.