Ranking Supreme Court Liberal Breyer Defies Far-Left Demands That He Step Down

Ranking Supreme Court Liberal Breyer Says He Has No Plans To Step Down

Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer, who became the senior liberal member of the high court after the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg last fall, said on Wednesday that he has no immediate plans for retirement.

Since the death of Ginsburg, many liberals and some Democrat Congress members have called on Breyer to resign so that President Joe Biden could name a younger liberal judge to the court while Democrats hold a razor thin majority.

Breyer turns 83 in August and has been on the high court for 27 years. He says that currently, he is satisfied with his role on the court, and has no plans to step down.

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A New Era

During his interview with CNN, Breyer said that there are two main factors in any retirement decision: “Primarily, of course, health, second, the court.” He continued saying that his new position on the court, “has made a difference to me. … It is not a fight. It is not sarcasm. It is deliberation.”

He said this is especially true during private discussions among the Justices.

With the death of Ginsburg and the appointment by former President Donald Trump of Justices Neil Gorsuch, Brett Kavanaugh, and Amy Coney Barrett, the 5-4 split in the court became, at least nominally, a 6-3 split.

Just one appointee by Biden would not change the ideological bent.

One of the things that come with Breyer’s new seniority is the power to assign the opinion when the liberal Justices vote together.

He says he does his best to distribute dissents in high profile cases between himself, Justice Elena Kagan, and Justice Sonia Sotomayor.

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Left Wants Breyer To Resign

Reaction from the left on social media was one of outrage and an assured apocalypse. The offerings on Twitter portrayed Justice Breyer as an arrogant egomaniac bent on thwarting liberal causes.

An example of some of the tweets looked like this:


Sirota’s comments were echoed by others.

Then there was @anthelonious who knows democracy is near its end:

But the most telling of what happens when the left does not get its way goes to appropriately named, @_inane:


According to CNN, when Justice Breyer was asked directly if he had decided when he would step down, he simply said, “no.”

Consequential Cases

In his time on the nation’s highest court, Justice Breyer has been involved in decisions of some signifiant cases.

In 2000, he wrote the majority opinion for Stenberg v. Carhart, which ruled that a Nebraska law banning partial-birth abortions was unconstitutional because it interfered too heavily with the right of a woman to decide her own abortion.

In 2015, Breyer wrote the dissent for Glossip v. Gross, which dealt with the constitutionality of Oklahoma’s lethal injection process. The standout of the dissent was that Breyer stated that he wished the court would reassess the constitutionality of the death penalty.

During the most recent Supreme Court session, he led the way in the court rejecting a third challenge to the Affordable Care Act, and upholding the free speech rights of students.


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