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Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy Announces Retirement
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Summary: United States Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy, who often provides a swing vote, will be retiring at the end of July.

The United States Supreme Court is about to get a new member. Justice Anthony Kennedy, generally a conservative justice, announced he will be retiring by the end of July, according to NBC News. His departure gives President Donald Trump the opportunity to select another member.


Kennedy is often the swing vote on highly political issues. Voting in favor of same-sex marriage, abortion access, and more that the other conservative judges voted against. He has also lined with his fellow conservative members to vote on things like the removal of the Voting Rights Act. Washington attorney Tom Goldstein said, “Justice Kennedy was the most important member of the court in a century, maybe ever. …It’s not just that he was the pivotal vote so often. It’s that his thinking changed the country. Gay rights is the biggest example, but it’s not the only one.”

President Trump announced after the announcement that the search for a replacement will begin immediately. Experts predict that Trump will select a young, conservative member that can be a part of the court for generations to come. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell suggested that they plan to have a new justice by midterm elections in November.

There is already a list of 25 potential nominees from the previous position filled a year ago. Trump said the replacement would come from that list. He said, “Hopefully, we’re going to pick someone who will be as outstanding” as Kennedy.

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Rumors of his retirement have been floating around for a year. Kennedy, the second-oldest justice, turns 82 next month. Ruth Bader Ginsburg is 85. He was nominated to the Supreme Court in 1987 by President Ronald Reagan, a fellow Californian. He was Reagan’s third pick with the Senate rejecting Robert Bork as too rigid and the second nominee, Douglas Ginsburg, admitted to smoking marijuana.

Kennedy started off as a pure conservative but changed sides in the landmark ruling to uphold Roe v. Wade even though some years later, Kennedy went back on that to write the ruling approving a federal ban on partial-birth abortions.

Whoever the successor will be they will likely be the fifth conservative judge on the bench, joining Chief Justice John Roberts and Justices Samuel Alito, Neil Gorsuch, and Clarence Thomas.

Who do you think the successor will be? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below.

To learn more about the Supreme Court nominees from a year ago, read these articles:



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