Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg was appointed to the US Supreme Court in 1993 by President Clinton. In recent years she has been in poor health with five bouts of cancer. She passed away Friday at age 87. She was highly respected by her colleagues, including all the conservative justices.
President Trump now has the chance to appoint another conservative justice. If he is successful, the Supreme Court will have a conservative majority that will interpret the law rather than make law for years to come.
The Democrats in the Senate will fight tooth and nail to keep Trump from appointing a justice before the end of his term. Biden has already squawked that Trump would be wrong to appoint a justice this close to the election.
If Trump nominates a justice with impeccable credentials and not the slightest hint of any questionable behavior during his lifetime, the Republicans should be able to confirm the nominee since they control the Senate.
However on Friday, just hours before Ginsburg’s death, GOP Sen. Lisa Murkowski told Alaska Public Media that she wouldn’t vote to confirm any new justice until after the voters decide who the next president will be. And last month, GOP Sen. Susan Collins told the New York Times that she would not vote to confirm a new justice in October because that would be “too close” to the November election and that if Trump loses, she wouldn’t vote to confirm a new justice in the lame-duck session either. Furthermore it is rumored that Sen. Mitt Romney is set to lead a Republican rebellion against picking a new justice before the end of Trump’s term.
In 2016, when Obama tried to pick a new justice, most of the Republican senators who are still in office now went on record as opposed to picking a justice during an election year.
Nevertheless, let’s hope the President will nominate a justice whose nomination will sail through the senate and be confirmed before the end of Trump’s term.
Ruth Bader Ginsburg lost her fight to keep Trump from appointing another conservative justice. She died from her latest bout with cancer on the eve of Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year, one of the two high holy days in the Jewish faith. A Jew who dies on the High Holiday is considered a “Tzadik,” a righteous one.
Like her or not, Justice Ginsburg served with distinction.