Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer has revealed he will retire from the Supreme Court on Thursday at noon, a move that comes after liberal groups and activists heavily pressured him to retire and make way for another justice.
“It has been my great honor to participate as a judge in the effort to maintain our Constitution and the Rule of Law,” Breyer said in a letter addressed to President Joe Biden.
“This past January, I wrote to inform you of my intent to retire from regular active service as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States, upon the Court rising for its summer recess,” he wrote.
“You have nominated and the United States Senate has confirmed the Honorable Ketanji Brown Jackson to succeed me in the office, and I understand that she is prepared to take the prescribed oaths to begin her service as the 116th member of this Court.”
Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson will replace Breyer, as the justice noted in his letter to the president. She was interviewed by The Washington Post in mid-May and was asked whether she condemned the protesting at the justices’ homes.
“I don’t have any comment,” she responded.
“I can’t answer that,” Jackson added, asked if leaking the draft opinion “was a good thing or a bad thing.”
Her confirmation to the Court was backed by Demand Justice, an organization that reportedly has ties to the influential progressive dark money group Arabella Advisors, which advocates for court packing and has repeatedly orchestrated campaigns to sway the justices on high-profile cases.
When the draft Supreme Court opinion overturning Roe v. Wade was leaked in May, Demand Justice Executive Director Brian Fallon praised the unprecedented leak, saying, “SCOTUS leaks are good. Elite lawyers on both the left and right treating the Court as precious all these years have just been giving cover to an institution that is wholly unaccountable. Rip the veil off.”
“All Democrats need to show the same urgency as the clerk who apparently risked his or her career to sound this alarm,” he continued. “Those on the inside know best how broken the institution is. We should listen.”
Demand Justice launched an April 2021 campaign to pressure Breyer to step down and make way for the first black female Supreme Court justice (Jackson was already considered the top candidate at the time).
Fallon, a former top aide to Senate Majority Leader Schumer (D-NY), insisted in April 2021 that it was “worrisome that Justice Breyer has not said yet that he will step down,” according to The Hill.