Monday, June 28, 2010

Deaths in the News

Today's big news is about the death of Sen. Robert Byrd (D-WV), which is certainly appropriate. He served in the senate longer than any other in America's history. Heck, he began his senate career before I was born, so a long time ago. A huge and controversial legacy, to be sure.
But I also think that attention should be paid to Martin Ginsburg, Husband Of Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Dies At 78, as I wonder how it will impact Ms. Ginsberg's ongoing battle with cancer. She certainly has been courageous in her battle, but she's looking worse and more frail of late, and losing her husband certainly wont help. As the Kagan hearings begin, there is a very likely possibility that Obama may soon have another Supreme Court vacancy to fill.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I have to say... I'm not a huge fan of RBG, and it's not entirely because of her politics. I've heard from a very reliable (and even-handed) familial source that, in person, she's extremely cold and sour. I should also add that this source clerked (like Kagan) for Thurgood Marshall and, while disagreeing with his politics, had a tremendous respect for his judicial process.

That having been said, I give RBG my condolences on her loss, and I DO hope that she wins the battle. It's hard not to respect her impressive career.

The politics gods have almost cheated Obama, like Dubya. Bush got to replace Rehnquist and SDO, both rightwing justices. Obama has gotten to replace JPS and Souter, and RBG would be another "liberal" justice that Obama would get to replace. It seems the gods above like the current center-right (more or less) balance of judicial power.

SDO, however, had a common-sense approach to the SCOTUS -- including a pro-choice view. She was rightwing, but not TOO rightwing. With Rehnquist's death, Bush was able to replace the two of them with Roberts (certifiable rightwing, but respectable) and Alito (certifiable farriight nutjob). Obama's replaced Souter (a Bush I appointee, but regarded as liberal compared to the current court balance) with Sotomayor, who, by all accounts, is probably squarely on the left, and JPS (who was appointed by Ford, and, yet still considered himself a conservative, gradually migrated to the relative left as the court moved to the right, and became the heart and soul of the liberal plurality) with Elena Kagan, who will most likely be a center-left justice. (It would seem that even President Obama is resigned to the court's migration to the right)

I disliked the Sotomayor nomination, but I love the Kagan nomination, and, if RBG should be forced to retire, I'm excited to find out whom the president will nominate next.