Tags: Ginsburg | Chemerinsky | Supreme | Court

Chemerinsky: Ginsburg Should Go

Image: Chemerinsky: Ginsburg Should Go
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By    |   Thursday, 25 Sep 2014 02:49 PM

A distinguished professor of law has reiterated his plea for Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg to step down before the mid-term November elections, but Ginsburg insists she isn't going anywhere.

Fearing that a Republican Senate takeover in November could deny President Barack Obama any chance at replacing Ginsburg, known as a liberal voice on the court, with a justice who would share her ideology and vote, Erwin Chemerinsky, dean and professor of law at the University of California Irvine School of Law, wrote in Politico, "In deciding when to retire, Ginsburg, who is the eldest among the nine justices, should maximize the chance that her successor will be someone with her values and views."

When Chemerinsky made the same pitch in an op-ed piece in the Los Angeles Times in March, Ginsburg, at 81, the oldest Supreme Court justice, responded by granting a flurry of unusual interviews with Katie Couric and Elle Magazine, insisting she has no intention of retiring.

"Who do you think President Obama could appoint at this very day, given the boundaries that we have? If I resign any time this year, he could not successfully appoint anyone I would like to see in the court. (Senate Democrats) took off the filibuster for lower federal court appointments, but it remains for this court. So anybody who thinks that if I step down, Obama could appoint someone like me, they’re misguided. As long as I can do the job full steam…. I think I’ll recognize when the time comes that I can’t any longer. But now I can.

She told Couric, "All I can say is that I am still here and likely to remain for awhile. One of my models is Justice Louis Dembitz Brandeis, who was appointed to the court at the same age I was. He was 60. He retired at 83. I expect to stay at least that long."

Ginsburg has been on the Supreme Court since 1993, and was appointed by President Bill Clinton.

However, Chemerinsky wrote in Politico, "There is a significant chance that the Republicans will take the Senate in November. If they do, President Obama’s choices for the high court will be greatly constrained. There is no chance that a Republican Senate will allow a progressive, or even someone slightly progressive, to be confirmed. None."

In his LA Times March piece, Chemerinsky voiced fears that given the current makeup of the court, if an additional conservative justice is appointed, the balance of the court could swing, allowing, for example, the overturning of Roe v. Wade and the outlawing of abortions.

"On many cases — including ones involving environmental law, healthcare, gay marriage, the death penalty and the rights of those in Guantanamo — the four liberal justices have joined with Justice Anthony M. Kennedy for a progressive result.

"But if a conservative had been occupying Ginsburg's seat when the court heard those cases, the rulings might well have been very different, and if a conservative takes her seat when she leaves, they might not survive," Chemerinsky wrote.

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A distinguished professor of law has reiterated his plea for Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg to step down before the mid-term November elections, but Ginsburg insists she isn't going anywhere. Fearing that a Republican Senate takeover in November could deny...
Ginsburg, Chemerinsky, Supreme, Court
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2014-49-25
Thursday, 25 Sep 2014 02:49 PM
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