Senior White House correspondent Major Garrett reports this morning that while there's definitely a "front runner" for the Supreme Court nomination, nothing is a done deal.
Two senior administration officials deeply involved in President Obama's deliberations on choosing a nominee to replace retiring Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens say no decision has been made and that interviews are contemplated and nominee qualifications are still being reviewed.
Both officials confirmed the long-held suspicion that Solicitor General Elena Kagan was a leading candidate for the high court vacancy. Both emphatically denied a decision has been made to nominate Kagan, a former Harvard Law School dean.
"I can tell you, without any hedging, that he has not made up his mind yet and is still talking to and (looking) through candidates," one senior official said. "It may well end up being her (Kagan), but there's no white smoke yet."
Said another official on the Beltway Kagan-to-the-court zeitgeist, another top official said: "It's a jump ball."
Kagan is one of the four possible nominees to have been interviewed by Obama and Vice President Joe Biden. The others are 7th Circuit Court justice Diane Wood, 9th Circuit justice Sidney Thomas, and D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals justice Merrick Garland.