"You go about 16 blocks and hang a right."

That was White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs in Thursday's daily press briefing when one reporter asked the simple question that lurks in the back of everyone's mind right now in Washington...

"Supreme Court?"

Of course, the press corps does not need directions to the high court.

What reporters are interested in is when President Obama will reveal his decision to replace Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens, who announced his retirement early last month.

Gibbs has been playing a game of cat and mouse with members of the media for the last several weeks, as reporters have nudged him into spilling any details about the selection process and the White House has remained tight-lipped on who the president will nominate and when such a decision will come.

 

This will be the second Supreme Court pick for Mr. Obama since he took office. Last year, under a veil of scrutiny, he nominated his first justice to the bench.  And though some Republicans on the Senate Judiciary Committee were concerned about judge Sonia Sotomayor's background, she sailed through the confirmation process rather quickly, with nine Republicans crossing the aisle to vote in her favor.

Still, Mr. Obama faces potential backlash for his next nominee and some on the Judiciary Committee are already accusing him of looking for judges who seek to control the Constitution.

After meeting with the president on Wednesday to discuss the vacancy, Utah Republican Orrin Hatch blasted Mr. Obama for being "selective" about what he wants justices to defer to Congress.  "He wants them to use values that are not within the Constitution to strike down legislation that he does not like, but wants them to ignore values that are in our written Constitution to uphold legislation that he does like," Hatch said in a speech at the Cato Institute.  "Judges, just like presidents and senators, take an oath to support and defend the Constitution, not core constitutional values."

Hatch was referring to Mr. Obama's remarks during an April 21 meeting at the White House with a bipartisan group of senators in which he was asked by a reporter whether he would be willing to nominate someone who did not support a woman's right to choose.

"I will say the same thing that every President has said since this issue came up, which is, I don't have litmus tests around any of these issues but I will say that I want somebody who is going to be interpreting our Constitution in a way that takes into account individual rights and that includes women’s rights," Mr. Obama said, reiterating a position he has held since he was a presidential candidate.  "That's going to be something that is very important to me because I think part of what our core Constitutional values promote is the notion that individuals are protected in their privacy and their bodily integrity and women are not exempt from that."