Wednesday, December 14, 2011
When President Clinton came to office in 1993, he had the opportunity to appoint two Supreme Court Justices within eighteen months. Similar to President Obama in 2009-10 both Presidents having significant majorities in the Senate. Which gave President Clinton a lot of leeway in who he could appoint as long as he appointed someone who was clearly qualified. To not get into trouble with Senate Democrats or attempt Senate Republicans to block a Supreme Court Nominee. Even though they were in the minority and I believe it was Justice Harry Blackmon who was resigning from the Supreme Court. When President Clinton appointed US Judge Ruth Bader Ginsberg to replace Justice Blackmon. Judge Ginberg was appointed by President Jimmy Carter in 1979 or 80 to the US Appeals Court. And she even had the support of Conservative Republican Sen. Orrin Hatch and Senate Republicans didn't try to block her. And Justice Ginsberg has been one Supreme Court Nominee that the President knew what they were getting when they appointed. Unlike President George HW Bush who when he appointed Judge David Souter in 1990. Was probably looking for a conservative and got a liberal instead, which is why he probably appointed Clarence Thomas to the Supreme Court. In 1991 to make up for the Souter Appointment that cost him support with the Republican Party. Justice Thomas is probably the most Conservative Justice on the Supreme Court, so that appointment for President Bush has paid off. And he got that appointment through a Democratic Senate in 1991.
President Clinton wanted two Liberal Democrats and a women appointed to the Supreme Court in 1993 and 1994. And thats exactly what he got in Stephen Breyer and Ruth Ginsberg. They are the two most Liberal Justices on the Court right now, the jury is still out on Justice Sotomayor and Justice Kagan. Justice Ginsberg has a long record of fighting for Equality in the Workplace for women going back to the 1950s and 1970s. Leading up to her Appointment by President Carter in 1979-80 and had a solid Liberal Record there. Which led to her Appointment to the Supreme Court in 1993. Who even had the support of Sen. Hatch at the time the Ranking Member of the Judiciary Committee. She's had a very good Liberal Record on the Supreme Court as well and has been a very reliable Liberal Vote as well. But now that she's in her 80s and with a Democratic President. Its time for her to think about stepping down as the Liberal Magazine The New Republic argued just a few months ago. So President Obama can replace her with a Liberal instead of waiting until she's not up for the job anymore. And having to step down when there's a Republican President, which could happen by 2013. Not likely with an improving economy and the mess in the Republican Party. President Obama is the clear favorite but its not a given that he'll get reelected.
Justice Ginsberg has had a very good record and has been an excellent Spokesperson for American Liberalism going back forty years. Being appointed by two Democratic Presidents and being confirmed by the Senate twice with overwhelming Bi Partisan votes. Fighting for equality and standing up for Individual Liberty in America and has left a good record for herself. But in practical political terms, she should make one more contribution to the movement and step down while she's still up to the job. And while there's still a Democratic President and Democratic Senate.