Political leaders from both sides of the aisle and the chief justice of the United States offered tributes to Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who died on Friday, remembering her as a trailblazer and a champion for justice.
The chief justice, John G. Roberts Jr., said in a statement released by the court: “Our nation has lost a jurist of historic stature. We at the Supreme Court have lost a cherished colleague. Today we mourn but with confidence that future generations will remember Ruth Bader Ginsburg as we knew her — a tireless and resolute champion of justice.”
The sudden news of Justice Ginsburg’s death jolted the political world in Washington and reverberated far beyond, introducing the potential for a bruising and partisan nomination fight over the final stretch of the 2020 presidential campaign and a new layer of urgency surrounding whom voters will ultimately elect.
Mr. Trump has long brandished his efforts to appoint Republican judges and remake the courts as a re-election argument to weary right-leaning voters, and he released a list of potential Supreme Court nominees this month.
Aware that Republicans are likely to seek to appoint a replacement for Justice Ginsburg, Senator Chuck Schumer, Democrat of New York and the minority leader, urged his Republican colleagues to exercise patience.
“The American people should have a voice in the selection of their next Supreme Court Justice,” he said. “Therefore, this vacancy should not be filled until we have a new president.”
Republicans argued four years ago that a vacant Supreme Court seat should not be filled in an election year.
In a separate tweet, Mr. Schumer wrote: “Tonight, we mourn the passing of a giant in American history, a champion for justice, a trailblazer for women. She would want us all to fight as hard as we can to preserve her legacy.”
Senator Amy Klobuchar, a former prosecutor, a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee and a former presidential Democratic candidate, said of the justice on Twitter: “An icon. A hero. A woman way ahead of her time.”
Pete Buttigieg, the former mayor of South Bend, Ind., who also mounted a presidential campaign, called Justice Ginsburg a “a titan of justice” whose “jurisprudence expanded the rights of all Americans, shaping our lives for the better.”
Senator Dick Durbin of Illinois, another Democrat, said on Twitter: “The Supreme Court’s most valiant lady is gone. Rest in peace, Ruth.”
Former President George W. Bush, a Republican, said in a statement that the justice had “loved our country.”
“She dedicated many of her 87 remarkable years to the pursuit of justice and equality, and she inspired more than one generation of women and girls,” he said.
Lindsey Graham, a Republican senator from South Carolina and close ally of President Trump, called the justice “a trailblazer who possessed tremendous passion for her causes.”
“She served with honor and distinction as a member of the Supreme Court,” he said on Twitter. “While I had many differences with her on legal philosophy, I appreciate her service to our nation.”
And Rudolph W. Giuliani, President Trump’s personal lawyer, called the justice “a credit to the Court.”
“I disagreed with many of her decisions,” he wrote on Twitter, “but they were all well reasoned and well argued.”
Speaker Nancy Pelosi ordered the flags at the U.S. Capitol to be flown at half-staff, her deputy chief of staff, Drew Hammill, said on Twitter.
Sydney Ember, Bryan Pietsch and Matt Stevens contributed reporting.
The post ‘A Titan of Justice’: Leaders React to Ginsburg’s Death appeared first on New York Times.