Justice John Paul Stevens, who was nominated to the Supreme Court by Republican President Gerald Ford in 1975 in the wake of Watergate and stepped down almost 35 years later as a leader for the liberal side of the bench, has died. He was 99.
"Justice John Paul Stevens, who was nominated to the Supreme Court by Republican President Gerald Ford in 1975 in the wake of Watergate and stepped down almost 35 years later as a leader for the liberal side of the bench, has died. He was 99."
At first a moderate conservative, Stevens emerged as a leader of the court's liberal wing, supporting abortion rights, gay rights and the environment.
"At first, he was perceived to be a moderate conservative — he voted to allow the reinstatement of capital punishment nationwide — but as the court moved right over time, he emerged as a de facto leader of the court's so-called liberal wing, supporting a strict separation of church and state and strong enforcement of laws to protect civil rights and the environment."
Maybe this should be moved to PI since I'm sure the discussion may become political, but I wasn't sure. Maybe this will just be a neutral RIP thread. At the risk of sounding political, I will say his quote in his dissent in Bush v. Gore rang true then and rings true now except I'm not so sure about time healing the wound to the confidence in the Court.
The endorsement of that position by the majority of this Court can only lend credence to the most cynical appraisal of the work of judges throughout the land. It is confidence in the men and women who administer the judicial system that is the true backbone of the rule of law. Time will one day heal the wound to that confidence that will be inflicted by today's decision. One thing, however, is certain. Although we may never know with complete certainty the identity of the winner of this year's Presidential election, the identity of the loser is perfectly clear. It is the Nation's confidence in the judge as an impartial guardian of the rule of law.