Biden promises Black woman nominee to SCOTUS as Justice Breyer announces retirement: live updates

Written by on January 27, 2022

  • Supreme Court docket Justice Stephen Breyer formally broadcasts retirement to President Joe Biden.
  • Breyer was nominated to the excessive court docket by President Invoice Clinton in 1994.
  • He has voted reliably with the Supreme Court docket’s liberal bloc.
  • Biden says he’ll nominate a Black girl as Breyer’s successor by the top of February.

WASHINGTON – President Joe Biden on Thursday formally introduced the retirement of Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer at a White Home occasion, praising the liberal jurist as a “mannequin public servant” and vowing to maneuver swiftly to call his successor.

“I believe he is a mannequin public servant, in a time of nice division on this nation,” Biden stated.

Biden, who pledged to name a Black woman to the excessive court docket, stated he deliberate to call his nominee by the top of February.

At 83, Breyer is the second-most senior affiliate justice, and his retirement was inspired by liberals who wished to make sure Biden’s nominee would profit from a Senate managed by Democrats.

The president stated he would hunt down recommendation from each events and main students, meet with potential candidates and thoroughly examine their former instances earlier than making his determination over the subsequent month. However he vowed to call an “historic candidate” who’s “worthy of Justice Breyer’s legacy.”

Biden, who presided over Breyer’s affirmation because the chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee almost three a long time in the past, known as Breyer’s retirement “bittersweet.”

“All of us had excessive hopes for the mark he would depart on the historical past of legislation and the Structure,” he recalled. “And he is exceeded these hopes in each doable approach.”

What’s subsequent:Breyer retirement lays groundwork for historic nomination of first Black woman to Supreme Court

Psaki: Lack of Black girls on Supreme Court docket doesn’t equal lack of certified candidates

The truth that no Black girls have ever been nominated for the Supreme Court docket is just not a sign of an absence of certified candidates, White Home press secretary Jen Psaki stated Thursday.

As a substitute, she stated, it “exhibits a deficiency of the previous choice processes.”

“The president’s view is that it’s gone time to have a Black girl on the Supreme Court docket,” she stated.

Psaki had been requested whether or not Biden’s requirement that his nominee be a Black girl is “reverse racism” or in any other case inappropriate.

Psaki stated that, along with nominate a document variety of Black girls to serve on the decrease courts, Biden has additionally put ahead “the best stage of Ivy League nominees.”

“He has nominated a broad sway of extraordinarily certified, skilled and credentialed nominees,” she stated, “and achieved that by additionally making them extremely various.”

— Maureen Groppe

Breyer ‘hand delivered’ resignation letter to Biden

Psaki declined to say when Biden was made conscious of Breyer’s determination however revealed that the liberal jurist hand-delivered his formal resignation letter to the president this morning earlier than the official White Home occasion.

Psaki stated the White Home would lay out extra element about when Biden discovered of Breyer’s determination.

— Courtney Subramanian

President Joe Biden shakes hands with Supreme Court Associate Justice Stephen Breyer as Breyer removes his face mask to speak about his retirement in the Roosevelt Room of the White House in Washington, Thursday, Jan. 27, 2022.

Psaki takes purpose at Republicans as she factors to no public brief checklist to exchange Breyer

White Home press secretary Jen Psaki responded to Republican criticism of Biden’s potential decide to succeed Breyer, emphasizing the White Home has but to disclose a listing of potential nominees.

“We now have not talked about a single identify. We now have not put out a listing,” she stated. “If anybody is saying they plan to characterize whoever he nominates, after thorough consideration with each events, as radical earlier than they knew actually something about who she is, they only obliterated their very own credibility.”

Psaki’s feedback got here after Senate Minority Chief Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., launched an announcement saying Biden “should not outsource this necessary determination to the novel left.”

She stated Biden is grateful to Republican members who’ve already indicated they plan to work with him.

Requested when the White Home plans to launch Biden’s brief checklist, Psaki stated declined to supply a timeline and repeated Biden is reviewing potential candidates.

— Courtney Subramanian

‘Lengthy overdue’:Biden reiterates vow to name first Black woman to Supreme Court

McConnell warns Biden in opposition to outsourcing SCOTUS decide to ‘radical left’

Senate Minority Chief Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., known as on Biden to appoint a reasonable candidate to exchange Breyer.

“To the diploma that President Biden acquired a mandate, it was to control from the center, steward our establishments, and unite America,” McConnell stated in an announcement Thursday. “The president should not outsource this necessary determination to the novel left.”

Democrats are prone to scoff at McConnell’s warning. The GOP chief blocked Barack Obama’s Supreme Court docket decide, Merrick Garland, in 2016 after which put Donald Trump’s nominee, Amy Coney Barrett, on a affirmation quick observe.

— Phillip Bailey

VP Harris to have ‘central position’ in nomination and affirmation of Breyer alternative

Vice President Kamala Harris will play a central position to find a nominee to exchange Breyer on the Supreme Court docket, White Home press secretary Jen Psaki stated Thursday.

She famous Harris’ previous expertise on the Senate Judiciary Committee and as California’s lawyer normal.

Biden, Psaki stated, “respects her opinion vastly.”

Ron Klain, Biden’s chief of employees, will even be closely concerned as will senior adviser Cedric Richmond, legislative affairs director Louisa Terrell and others.

In the course of the affirmation course of, outdoors specialists will even be introduced in to assist, in line with Psaki.

— Maureen Groppe

Biden has been contemplating candidates since final yr

Biden has been reviewing the information of potential Supreme Court docket candidates since final yr, White Home press secretary Jen Psaki stated Thursday.

“His intention is to appoint a certified candidate after finishing a rigorous course of,” she stated of the timing.

Biden’s assertion that he intends to announce his nomination to exchange Stephen Breyer by the top of February makes clear it’s a precedence for him, she added.

— Maureen Groppe

What has Biden stated previously about filling Supreme Court docket vacancies?

Whereas campaigning for president, Biden promised to call a Black girl to the nation’s highest court docket for the primary time in historical past. On Thursday, he reaffirmed that dedication. Biden already has nominated 62 girls to the federal judiciary.

Previously he is commented on every part from court docket packing to who ought to get to choose nominees. With the retirement of Justice Breyer, Biden’s previous remarks may yield some clues about how he’ll go about selecting a alternative for Breyer now.

Learn the remainder right here:What Biden has said about filling vacancies on the nation’s highest court

— Chelsey Cox

Biden invitations Breyer to remain within the Lincoln Bed room

After Beyer spoke, Biden invited the justice and his spouse to go to the White Home and keep within the Lincoln Bed room. Biden famous a handwritten copy of former President Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Deal with is on the wall.

“You’ve obtained to come back and see it,” he stated. “Carry your grandchildren as nicely.”

Breyer had described how his spouse, Joanna, paid their grandchildren to memorize the tackle, which Lincoln delivered through the Civil Warfare.

— Maureen Groppe

Extra:Justice Stephen Breyer’s notable majority opinions and dissents, from abortion to the death penalty

Supreme Court Associate Justice Stephen Breyer listens as President Joe Biden speaks about the retirement of Breyer in the Roosevelt Room of the White House in Washington on Jan. 27, 2022.

Biden could also be contemplating Choose Ketanji Brown Jackson for SCOTUS

President Joe Biden confirmed Thursday he’ll nominate a Black girl to serve on the Supreme Court docket for the primary time within the nation’s historical past. One individual extensively thought of to be a high candidate: Choose Ketanji Brown Jackson.

The 51-year-old, Harvard Regulation grad, who was not too long ago confirmed to a seat on the U.S. Court docket of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, was floated as a doable nominee again in 2016 when President Barack Obama was nonetheless within the White Home.

You can read more about Judge Jackson here.

— John Fritze

Extra:Who is Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson? For starters, she once clerked for Justice Breyer

WASHINGTON, DC - APRIL 28: Ketanji Brown Jackson, nominee to be U.S. Circuit Judge for the District of Columbia Circuit, testifies during her Senate Judiciary Committee confirmation hearing in Dirksen Senate Office Building on April 28, 2021 in Washington, DC. The committee is holding the hearing on pending judicial nominations.

Breyer cites Lincoln’s Gettysburg Deal with

Holding a pocketbook copy of the Structure, Breyer known as the U.S. a “sophisticated nation” that doesn’t at all times agree. He stated the U.S. was based as “an experiment,” one which continues at this time, earlier than quoting Abraham Lincoln’s “Gettysburg Deal with.”

“We at the moment are engaged in an ideal civil struggle to find out whether or not that nation, or any nation so conceived and so devoted, can lengthy endure,” Breyer stated.

He expressed optimism that the “nice experiment” will proceed for future generations.

“I am an optimist, and I am fairly certain it’ll,” he stated.

— Joey Garrison

Extra:‘Stealthy’ Justice Stephen Breyer had a big impact on abortion. That legacy is now in jeopardy

First lady Jill Biden, foreground, and Joanna Breyer, wife of Supreme Court Associate Justice Stephen Breyer, listen during an event to announce the retirement of justice Breyer in the Roosevelt Room of the White House in Washington, on Jan. 27, 2022.

Biden declines to take questions on Breyer retirement, nominee

Biden declined to take questions Thursday following transient remarks asserting the retirement of Supreme Court docket Justice Stephen Breyer, saying it could be “inappropriate.”

“I believe it is inappropriate to take questions with the justice right here,” Biden stated. “He is nonetheless sitting on the bench. However you may have loads of alternatives to get me later at this time.”

Supreme Court docket justices hardly ever take questions from reporters however lots of the questions Thursday would possible have directed to Biden the frenzied course of that may now start for selecting Breyer’s successor.

— John Fritze

Pragmatist. Institutionalist. Optimist:How Justice Stephen Breyer changed the Supreme Court

Biden to announce determination earlier than the top of February

Biden stated it is his intention to announce his determination for Breyer’s successor earlier than the top of February.

“I’ve made no selection at this level,” the president stated, noting that he plans to ask senators from each events, main students and attorneys and advisers like Vice President Kamala Harris to supply their factors of view.

“In the long run, I’ll nominate a historic candidate, somebody who’s worthy of Justice Breyer’s legacy.”

— Courtney Subramanian

Biden praises Breyer’s legacy

Biden stated Breyer exceeded the hopes for him, when he was appointed to the court docket, “in each doable approach.”

Specifically, Biden praised Breyer for searching for widespread floor to carry colleagues collectively on opinions Biden known as Breyer’s opinions sensible, smart and nuanced.

Breyer knew the job of a decide is to not legislation down the legislation, however to “get it proper,” Biden stated. He “gave religion to the notion that the legislation exists to assist the individuals,” Biden added.

Beyer known as Biden’s remarks “terribly good.”

— Maureen Groppe

U.S. President Joe Biden, with retiring U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Stephen Breyer, speaks in the Roosevelt Room of the White House in Washington on Jan. 27, 2022.

Biden confirms he’ll nominate first Black girl to SCOTUS

President Joe Biden reiterated Thursday he’ll nominate a Black girl to the Supreme Court docket for the primary time within the nation’s historical past.

“It’s lengthy overdue,” Biden stated on the White Home in an occasion with Affiliate Justice Stephen Breyer, who’s retiring later this yr. “I’ll hold that dedication.”

Biden, who stated he’s already reviewing candidates, stated he would announce a candidate earlier than the top of February.

— John Fritze

Biden on Breyer: ‘As we speak is his day’

Biden known as Breyer a “mannequin public servant in a time of nice division on this nation,” including that he’s “every part his nation may have requested.”

“As we speak is his day – our day to commend his lifetime of service and his life on the court docket,” Biden, earlier than going into what he desires from a nominee to exchange him.

— Joey Garrison

President Joe Biden removes his face mask as he prepares to deliver remarks on the retirement of Supreme Court Associate Justice Stephen Breyer, left, in the Roosevelt Room of the White House in Washington, on Jan. 27, 2022.

Biden ‘proud and grateful’ to witness Breyer’s profession

Biden, a former senator who chaired the Senate Judiciary Committee, stated it was “my honor” to vote to verify Breyer to the U.S. Court docket of Appeals first in 1980 and later preside over his Supreme Court docket affirmation hearings in 1994.

He stated the pair joked earlier than his remarks about how Biden can be president when he determined to retire.

“I used to be proud and grateful to be there in the beginning of his distinguished profession within the Supreme Court docket,” Biden stated. “And I am very proud to be right here at this time on this announcement of his retirement.”

— Courtney Subramanian

Biden, Breyer start remarks 

President Joe Biden and Affiliate Justice Stephen Beyer have entered the Roosevelt Room on the White Home, the place the 2 will formally announce Breyer’s retirement.

“That is type of a bittersweet day for me,” Biden stated. “Justice Breyer and I’m going again a great distance.”

— John Fritze

What’s the course of for Supreme Court docket nominations?

The method for changing a Supreme Court docket justice at all times is carefully watched, however it’ll tackle new intrigue within the divided Senate, the place Democrats have struggled to unify behind Biden’s agenda.

The Senate is cut up evenly between the 2 events, with Vice President Kamala Harris performing because the tie-breaking vote. Whereas Democrats management the chamber, reasonable senators within the social gathering have stopped a number of items of laws the Biden administration has championed.

Right here is how Biden, and the presidents earlier than him, get their nominee onto the excessive court docket: The process for Supreme Court nominations and how long it could take.

— Rick Rouan

From left, Justice Clarence Thomas, Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Stephen Breyer.

Breyer formally broadcasts retirement in letter to Biden

Supreme Court docket Justice Stephen Breyer confirmed Thursday he’ll retire after almost three a long time on the bench, providing his first public assertion for the reason that information of his determination broke a day earlier.

“I enormously admire the privilege of serving as a part of the federal judicial system,” Breyer wrote in a letter to the president asserting his retirement. “I’ve discovered the work difficult and significant.”

Breyer’s letter was launched by the court docket minutes earlier than he was set to carry a joint look with Biden, who will now start the method of nominating his successor.

Nominated by President Invoice Clinton in 1994, Breyer has been a dependable vote for the court docket’s liberal bloc on instances coping with abortion, weapons and faith.

— John Fritze

Breyer had a big effect on abortion. Will that legacy survive?

Justice Stephen Breyer will not be the best-known member of the Supreme Court docket, however the senior-most liberal justice has had a huge effect on the divisive situation of abortion.

As he prepares to depart the court docket, a lot of these opinions seem like in jeopardy.

Breyer has written key opinions increasing the landmark 1973 Roe v. Wade determination that established the constitutional proper to abortion and a subsequent 1992 case. However the court docket, the place conservatives take pleasure in a 6-Three benefit, has shifted considerably in recent times and a majority has signaled it might undermine these precedents later this yr.

You may learn extra about Breyer’s abortion selections right here: 

Abortion rights:‘Stealthy’ Justice Stephen Breyer had a big impact on abortion. That legacy is now in jeopardy

— John Fritze

Republicans may delay, however not block Biden’s Supreme Court docket decide if all Democrats again nominee

Republicans could delay the confirmation of Biden’s decide to exchange Supreme Court docket Justice Stephen Breyer, however they gained’t be capable to block it by themselves if all Democrats unite behind a nominee. 

Beneath Senate guidelines that GOP lawmakers modified a number of years in the past, a easy majority is all that’s wanted to approve a presidential nomination to the nation’s highest court docket.

Which means the 50 Democrats may push by way of Biden’s decide with Vice President Kamala Harris casting the tie-breaking 51st vote, a truth acknowledged by South Carolina GOP Sen. Lindsey Graham, a member of the Judiciary Committee that may maintain hearings on the eventual nominee.

“If all Democrats dangle collectively – which I count on they’ll – they’ve the ability to exchange Justice Breyer in 2022 with out one Republican vote in assist,” he tweeted Wednesday shortly after information of Breyer’s retirement broke.

Learn the entire story right here:Republicans could delay, but not block Biden’s Supreme Court pick if all Democrats back nominee

– Ledge King

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