Obit: Ruth Bader Ginsburg

Ruth Bader Ginsburg, whose 27-year tenure as the second female justice on the U.S. Supreme Court culminated a legal career dedicated to advancing the rights of women, has died. She was 87.

She died due to complications of metastatic pancreatic cancer and was surrounded by her family at her home in Washington, the court said in a statement Friday. Ginsburg battled with five bouts of cancer.

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg participates in a discussion at the Georgetown University Law Center on February 10, 2020 in Washington, DC. Justice Ginsburg and U.S. Appeals Court Judge McKeown discussed the 19th Amendment which guaranteed women the right to vote which was passed 100 years ago.

Her death comes less than two months before an election and gives President Donald Trump a chance to try to shift the already conservative nine-member court further to the right by filling a third seat. Senate confirmation of his nominee would increase the chances of a decision overturning or severely curtailing the Roe v. Wade abortion-rights ruling.

Only days before her death, National Public Radio reported that Ginsburg dictated this statement to her granddaughter Clara Spera: “My most fervent wish is that I will not be replaced until a new president is installed.”

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has previously said the Senate would move to confirm any nominee this year, even though McConnell blocked President Barack Obama from having a hearing on his nomination of Merrick Garland in 2016. That set the stage for Trump to nominate Neil Gorsuch instead.


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