When Will Ruth Bader Ginsburg Retire? The Supreme Court Justice Won't Let Trump Replace Her
Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has become an internet mainstay, and an important reason why American liberals are still holding onto hope that maybe, just maybe, the country will go back to normal after Trump leaves the Oval Office for the last time. If you fall into that group, then this Ruth Bader Ginsburg retirement update will hit you like a blast of fresh, life-giving air: Ginsburg isn't giving up her Supreme Court seat anytime soon, no matter how much President Trump might like to replace her.
While she didn't explicitly announce her decision to stay on, Ginsburg has officially hired law clerks through 2020, the only justice to do that so far. Typically, justices don't hire clerks so far in advance for terms that they are uncertain whether they'll actually serve — but this time Ginsburg has jumped ahead, tapping four young law graduates from Stanford, Harvard, and Columbia to work with her in the 2019-2020 term.
Donald Trump already has a list of potential Supreme Court nominees, and Ginsburg is undoubtedly one of the justices whom he'd most like to replace with a conservative pick along the lines of Antonin Scalia or Trump nominee Neil Gorsuch.
After all, the Clinton nominee is the oldest justice on the Court, and she's essentially the anti-Trump. She's basically a living example of feminist persistence, which she's proved by fighting off misogyny, sexism, and even mansplaining for her entire life. She's already served on the court since 1993, meaning that only Justices Anthony Kennedy and Clarence Thomas have been there for longer. Thomas is only 69 and he's quite conservative anyway, so he likely isn't on Trump's radar as a potential justice to replace. Kennedy, at 81, most certainly is — but even Kennedy has hired his clerks through 2019, so Trump won't get the chance to replace the centrist judge just yet.
Kennedy often ends up as the deciding factor, as his opinions fall reliably to neither the liberal nor the conservative side. Ginsburg, however, is about as liberal as they come. The first majority opinion that she wrote was in the 1996 case of United States v. Virginia, in which the court ruled that Virginia Military Institute could no longer exclude women from their student body. She's also used her position on the court to argue for equal pay for women and to help protect the abortion rights of the millions of American women who are finding those rights threatened.
Many have expressed fears that her 24-year term might come to an end soon simply because of her age, but Ginsburg seems to be pushing all of those worries aside for now. She famously maintains a twice-weekly, hourlong exercise routine that would leave anyone red-faced, but the octogenarian cancer survivor apparently even pushes her personal trainer to include even the most challenging parts.
This is much more than can be said of President Trump, who famously believes that exercising drains people of energy that they cannot then regain. The thing that seems to most irk him about the justice also known as the Notorious RBG, though, is that she publicly spoke out against him when he was still only the presidential candidate — before saying that she regretted the statement. While Trump called for her resignation even then, her move to fill clerk positions throughout the rest of his term indicates that her current goal is to outlast him. While a second Trump term could potentially throw a wrench into that plan, Ginsburg insists, over and over, that she's still going strong. These clerk hires are yet more proof that all of her fans can believe her.