Brett Kavanaugh

Senate Democrats, who are divided on abortion policy, are instead turning to health care as a rallying cry for opposition to Brett Kavanaugh, President Trump's Supreme Court nominee.

Specifically, they are sounding the alarm that confirming the conservative U.S. Court of Appeals judge could jeopardize one of the Affordable Care Act's most popular provisions — its protections for people with pre-existing health conditions.

Over a dozen years as a judge on the federal appeals court in Washington, D.C., Brett Kavanaugh has weighed in on controversial cases involving guns, abortion, health care and religious liberty.

But after Kavanaugh emerged on President Trump's shortlist for the Supreme Court, a suggestion the judge made in a 2009 law review article swiftly took center stage:

"Provide sitting presidents with a temporary deferral of civil suits and of criminal prosecutions and investigations," Kavanaugh proposed.

Updated at 9:28 p.m. ET

President Trump has chosen Brett Kavanaugh to fill the Supreme Court vacancy left by retiring Justice Anthony Kennedy. If confirmed, Trump's choice would solidify the high court's conservative majority and continue the president's push to shift the federal bench to the right.

Trump announced his choice with a prime-time address from the White House East Room.