In a rare interview, Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg says she plans to stay on the court, no matter who is president.
Ginsburg, 80 and the leader of the court’s liberal wing, spoke to The New York Times at length on Friday. The whole piece is a worth a read, but here two highlights.
On her potential retirement, she said:
“‘There will be a president after this one, and I’m hopeful that that president will be a fine president,’ she said.
“Were Mr. Obama to name Justice Ginsburg’s successor, it would presumably be a one-for-one liberal swap that would not alter the court’s ideological balance. But if a Republican president is elected in 2016 and gets to name her successor, the court would be fundamentally reshaped.”
As for the court’s recent string of high-profile decisions, Ginsburg said:
“The last two terms, which brought major decisions on Mr. Obama’s health care law, race and same-sex marriage, were, she said, ‘heady, exhausting, challenging.’
“She was especially critical of the voting rights decision, as well as the part of the ruling upholding the health care law that nonetheless said it could not be justified under Congress’s power to regulate interstate commerce.
“In general, Justice Ginsburg said, ‘if it’s measured in terms of readiness to overturn legislation, this is one of the most activist courts in history.’”