I keep hearing about Stevens and Ginsburg holding on until at least the '06 elections and possibly '08 in the hopes of Democrat gains in Congress or possibly a Democrat president. I find it interesting that no one points out how risky a personal and political strategy that is, particularly for Stevens, who was appointed by a Republican president (ok, maybe it doesn't mean that much to him after all). How would you like your legacy to be that you held on to your court seat, in failing health and against the wishes of your friends and family, for the sheer partisan notion of having your seat filled by someone of similar POLITICAL leanings? Let's say the strategy backfires and Republicans keep their majority in '06 AND win the '08 presidential election (not entirely far-fetched, is it?) Your Stevens or Ginsburg, now what do you do... retire right away and make it obvious that your a partisan hack, and a loser of one at that, or just stay on until you die and not give a hoot since you'll never have to listen to what the public says about you anyway? Don't get me wrong, i'm not saying that Stevens and Ginsburg aren't above this strategy, just pointing out the possible pitfalls.
posted on 11/02/2005 12:41:21 PM PST
Granted, Ginsburg or Stevens may decide to retire next year. However, it is well-known O'Connor delayed her retirement until after '04 in part because of the filibuster mess in the Senate. It is not out of the realm of possiblity that one or both Justices would adopt a similar stance, especially Ginsburg, given that she was an ACLU lawyer prior to being nominated.
But no matter when one or both leave or for whatever reason, it cannot come too soon.
posted on 11/03/2005 8:02:45 AM PST
(Demolib Playbook Rule #2: If you can't beat 'em, filibuster. If that doesn't work, go to court.)
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