Obama To Choose Supreme Court Nominee By May 26

President Obama will decide on a candidate to replace the retiring Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens by May 26 at the latest, The Hill reports.

Despite the deadline -- the same date Obama nominated Sotomayor last year -- senior administration officials have told The Hill that it's "entirely likely" that he could choose a nominee "well before then."

"We've got a little more of a running start to the process," which has bolstered expectations that Obama's eventual pick will be confirmed and seated before the August recess, the official told The Hill.

Obama is set to meet with Senate leaders today to discuss a timetable for the nomination and eventual confirmation process of the next Supreme Court justice.

The AP reports that the President has already begun preliminary, informal talks with some of the potential high court nominees.