Skip to comments.Justice Kennedy: I think I’ll stick around until 2013 (SCOTUS hangs by a thread till then)
Posted on 07/06/2010 8:03:39 PM PDT by SeekAndFind
Increasingly, Justice Anthony Kennedy has become the most important member of the Supreme Court. After the retirement of Sandra Day O’Connor, Kennedy serves as the swing vote between the conservative and liberal blocs on the Court, siding more often with conservatives (but not often enough for their taste). At 74, though, Kennedy is at an age when most men think of retirement — and his departure would set off a political firestorm on Capitol Hill the likes of which haven’t been seen since Clarence Thomas endured his trial by fire in the Senate.
And maybe that’s why Kennedy tells close friends and relatives that he wants to wait a while before retiring … or perhaps it’s because of the man who would pick his successor:
Justice Kennedy, who turns 74 this month, has told relatives and friends he plans to stay on the high court for at least three more years – through the end of Obama’s first term, sources said.
That means Kennedy will be around to provide a fifth vote for the court’s conservative bloc through the 2012 presidential election. If Obama loses, Kennedy could retire and expect a Republican President to choose a conservative justice.
Kennedy, appointed by President Ronald Reagan, has been on the court 22 years. He has become a bit of a political nemesis at the White House for his increasing tendency to side with the court’s four rock-ribbed conservative justices.
In fact, as the New York Daily News implies, Kennedy may have made that decision after this year’s State of the Union address:
Without naming Kennedy, Obama was unusually critical of his majority opinion in the Citizens United case, handed down last January. That 5-4 decision struck down limits on contributions to political campaigns as an abridgement of free speech.
Obama called the ruling “a major victory for big oil, Wall Street banks, health insurance companies and the other powerful interests that marshal their power … in Washington to drown out the voices of everyday Americans.”
He was so angry that he took the unusual step of blasting the decision in his Jan. 27 State of the Union address, with Kennedy and five other justices looking on.
Obama certainly reveled in his prime-time, televised, cheap-shot attack at jurists who couldn’t fire back. Samuel Alito took fire from the media for having just mouthed a rebuttal. The only revenge any of them can take is to make sure that they stay in place until Obama leaves office. The “at least” part of the report almost certainly means that retirement at 80 may be just as possible as retirement at 76. After all, John Paul Stevens didn’t decide to retire until he was almost 90 years old.
Perhaps the timing is just a coincidence and Kennedy didn’t have plans to retire any earlier even prior to the 2008 election. However, this looks more like a quiet revenge, and a reminder to Obama that Kennedy will likely remain relevant longer than the President.
Keep a watchful eye open for buses, Mr. Justice Kennedy.
I guarantee Obama is salivating at the even remote possibility of getting his THIRD SCOTUS nomination opportunity... in SINGLE term....
And I don’t trust Obama any farther than my 4 year old could throw him.
SARAH 2012 PING!
May it be so, Lord.
Whew! I almost had a heart attack this morning when Fox and Friends said Kennedy was going to retire. I don’t think America can withstand another pig on Barry’s SCOTUS pig farm.
Have some spinach, Justice Kennedy.
A frightening thought. Could Obama possibly find worse appointments than he already has? I was surprised he didn't pick Hillary just to keep her knife out of his backside.
74 years old is a bit long in the tooth for being on the court. We better hope and pray that a Republican wins the White House in 2012 or we are in HUGE trouble. I think quite a few conservatives are getting up there.
The often ailing Justice Ginsberg should be the next to go. I’ve read that she wants to step down but Stevens beat her to the punch. She may have to step down when the Senate will be considerably to the right than it is now. The Conservatives should shoot down every Kagan commie rat that Obama chooses. He will be forced to pick a justice to the right of Ginsberg.
I pray that God protects Justice Kennedy in these next few years. He is hardly a Constitutional Originalist — as ALL Justices OUGHT to be — but at least he holds back the otherwise HUGE wave of Progressivism and the unchecked Judicial Activism that would flood and DROWN our nation if he were to depart the court in an untimely manner.
Which brings me to say, dear GOD I hope he has EXCELLENT PRIVATE security and not merely “government assigned” security. It’s kind of scary we are at that place now, but, do I trust the life of KEY Conservatives to just ANY Federal Security agency folks? TO just ANY alphabet soup agency? NO. We just can’t afford to. The VAST majority are BEYOND QUESTION loyal and they’ll do their JOBS. But it only takes ONE.
The fearful thing is — I am just almost as apprehensive about the potential dangers to our adversaries in Government — for different reasons, but I’m afraid they could face the same dangers...
lord, protect that man.
Just like the firestorm from the GOP over The Wise Latina and Kagan the monkey...
Ginsberg is next. Obama gets three and the USA gets it up the pipe...
Of course he could change his mind tomorrow if he feels differently. He is, after all, his own swing vote as well as ours.
As long as kennedy holds in there we should be in good shape. If the other old ones stick around past 2012 that’s bonus for us as it will make the court more conservative. I’m pretty confident we will win in 2012.
There’s always Bill Clinton: Think of the interns, think of the revenge against his enemies, think of how he can avoid the
old heifer by “working” late!
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