A liberal group is pushing Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer, who was appointed by former President Bill Clinton, to retire so that another Democratic president can appoint his replacement while having control of the U.S. Senate.
The group, Demand Justice, has been driving a truck-mounted electronic billboard around Capitol Hill and using social media to deliver the message to Breyer, 82. Some fear a repeat of the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who died Sept. 18, 2020, allowing President Donald Trump to fill her seat and give Republican-nominated justices a 6-3 edge on the high court.
Christopher Kang, the group’s co-founder and an Obama White House veteran, said he and co-founder Brian Fallon, who served as press secretary for Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign, are trying to educate liberals on the “importance of every single vacancy, and the need to start building a more enduring bloc on the court,” Newsmax reported.
“To that end, they launched a $2 million campaign in 2020 to engage progressive activists on high-court vacancies. They also ran ads and held organizing events after then-President Donald Trump nominated Amy Coney Barrett to replace the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, including a campaign to expand the number of seats on the Supreme Court, which the Biden administration is studying,” the website reported.
“It’s about reminding people that the Supreme Court is an inherently political institution. And in this moment, when we have a 50-50 Senate, part of this is about preserving Justice Breyer’s legacy and making sure that he’s succeeded by a like-minded justice,” Kang told the site.
Meanwhile, Juan Williams, a liberal journalist who appears often on Fox News, joined the cause, penning a column headlined, “Time for Justice Breyer to go.”
“The realistic fight is to keep the current imbalance on the court from getting worse,” Williams wrote. He continued:
That begins with nudging Justice Stephen Breyer, one of the three remaining Democratic nominees on the court, to retire now. Breyer is 82 years old. If he leaves the court now, he will be replaced by a Biden nominee who would likely be confirmed with the votes of 50 Democrats in the Senate aided by the tie-breaking vote of Vice President Harris.
Justices Thurgood Marshall and Ruth Bader Ginsburg, both nominated by Democrats, were both replaced by Republican nominees because they chose not to pay attention to the threat of a politicized court.
With the very real possibility that he could lose the Democrats’ Senate Majority next year — owing largely to those GOP voter suppression laws made possible by the Court — Biden has a limited opening to wrest back the balance of power on the Courts from the conservatives and give liberals a fighting chance for equal justice in the decades to come.
It is Biden as much as Breyer whom history will judge in this moment of supreme political consequence.
Republican judicial advocates told Newsmax that the effort to drive Breyer out is inappropriate.
“It’s such a ham-fisted attempt at strong-arming a justice,” said Carrie Severino, president of the conservative Judicial Crisis Network. “It’s inappropriate and counterproductive if you want the person to retire. I’m not sure why they think this is a good move, unless it’s to rile up the base.”