White House officials signaled to influential conservatives this weekend that Michael B. Mukasey, a nominee of President Ronald Reagan who is the former chief judge of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, is the likely choice to replace Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, several Republicans close to the process told The Politico.
Democrats and liberals are expected to view the choice as conciliatory, the Republicans said. Conservatives had been rooting for former Solicitor General Theodore B. (Ted) Olson, but Senator Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) vowed Wednesday to block his confirmation.
Mukasey, 66, worked under Rudolph Giuliani as a federal prosecutor in New York and is supporting the former mayor for president. Mukasey's son is a law partner with Giuliani.