Eighty-nine-year-old Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg says she is "very much alive" despite recent health scares that have fueled speculation about her ability to do her job.
Ginsburg made the remarks during a wide-ranging interview with NPR legal affairs correspondent Nina Totenberg that aired Wednesday morning.
"There was a Senator, I think it was after the pancreatic cancer, who announced with great glee that I was going to be dead within six months," Ginsburg said. "That senator whose name I've forgotten is now himself dead. [she giggles]
"And I am very much alive."
Ginsburg was referring to late Kentucky Sen. Jim Bunning, who later apologized for the remarks he made in 2009 following surgery she had for pancreatic cancer.
Ginsburg also had colorectal cancer in 1999 and last year had two cancerous nodules removed from her lung. Last December, she fell and fractured three ribs.
Ginsburg also told NPR she thinks it is a bad idea to pack the court with more justices because it could make the court look overtly partisan.
Several Democratic presidential candidates have made the pitch.
"I have heard that there are some people on the Democratic side who would like to increase the number of judges. I think that was a bad idea" when President Franklin Delano Roosevelt tried it, and reiterated, "I am not at all in favor of that solution."
Asked what she thought about issues like women's rights at a time with a conservative majority, Ginsburg responded: "I don't think there's going to be any turning back to old ways."
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