The Death of a Champion, Ruth Bader Ginsburg

We are all beyond devastated by the death of this ferocious champion of human rights.  There have been many tributes paid to her since her death was announced yesterday, but Barack Obama was very eloquent in his statement:

Former President Barack Obama is paying tribute to late Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who died Friday at the age of 87 due to complications of metastatic cancer.

In a statement released shortly after news of her death, Obama praised Ginsburg for being “a warrior for gender equality,” adding that she “believed that equal justice under law only had meaning if it applied to every single American.”

“Over a long career on both sides of the bench — as a relentless litigator and an incisive jurist — Justice Ginsburg helped us see that discrimination on the basis of sex isn’t about an abstract ideal of equality; that it doesn’t only harm women; that it has real consequences for all of us,” Obama, 59, added. “It’s about who we are — and who we can be.”

Obama also urged the Senate to honor the late justice by respecting her “fervent wish” to not be replaced “until a new president is installed.”

“Ruth Bader Ginsburg fought to the end, through her cancer, with unwavering faith in our democracy and its ideals,” Obama continued in his statement. “That’s how we remember her. But she also left instructions for how she wanted her legacy to be honored.”

He went on to say that when conservative Justice Antonin Scalia died in 2016, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell declared it too close to Election Day to consider a replacement. The move ultimately blocked the nomination of Obama’s choice for the high court, Merrick Garland. At the time, McConnell, a Republican, said elected officials should “give the people a voice in the filling of this vacancy” by waiting until the next president took office.

 

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