Category Archives: Justices

On this day in Supreme Court History—March 3, 1801: The Midnight Judges

On this date in 1801, John Marshall—at the time simultaneously serving as President John Adams’s Secretary of State and Chief Justice of the United States—signed the commissions of the “midnight judges,” setting in motion events that would lead to the landmark Supreme Court case Marbury v. Madison. The ruling, written by none other than Chief … Continue reading On this day in Supreme Court History—March 3, 1801: The Midnight Judges

On this day in Supreme Court History—February 18, 1988: Justice Anthony Kennedy Takes the Oath of Office

On this day in 1988, Justice Anthony Kennedy was sworn in as the 104th Justice of the Supreme Court. President Ronald Reagan nominated Kennedy as an Associate Justice on November 12, 1987. Kennedy was Reagan’s third attempt to fill the seat of Justice Lewis Powell, who had retired the previous June. Reagan’s first two nominations … Continue reading On this day in Supreme Court History—February 18, 1988: Justice Anthony Kennedy Takes the Oath of Office

On this day in Supreme Court History—February 15, 1932: Benjamin Cardozo Nominated to the Supreme Court

On this day in 1932, President Herbert Hoover nominated Benjamin Cardozo to the Supreme Court. Hoover, a Republican, nominated Cardozo, a Democrat, to replace Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr., who had retired at age 90. Although Cardozo was a Democrat, he had support from across the political spectrum. Cardozo had served for 18 years on the … Continue reading On this day in Supreme Court History—February 15, 1932: Benjamin Cardozo Nominated to the Supreme Court

Rethinking the Supreme Court — The Case for Term Limits

In recent months, there has been increasing talk about restructuring the Supreme Court. Ideas previously confined to the fringes of political and academic debate have gone mainstream. Demands to rethink the way the Court operates have become particularly prominent among those on the political left who have been scarred by a series of recent setbacks: … Continue reading Rethinking the Supreme Court — The Case for Term Limits

On this day in Supreme Court History—December 10, 1862: Justice Davis takes the oath of office

On this day in 1862, Justice David Davis took his oath of office. David Davis was born March 9, 1815, in Cecil County, Maryland. He moved to Illinois, where he became a state representative in 1845 and then a State Circuit Judge from 1848 to 1862. During this time he formed a friendship with Abraham … Continue reading On this day in Supreme Court History—December 10, 1862: Justice Davis takes the oath of office

On This Day in Supreme Court History—November 28, 1872—Justice Nelson Retired from the Court

On this day in 1872, Supreme Court Justice Samuel Nelson retired from the Court. Nelson was born on a farm in New York in 1792. After graduating from Middlebury College in 1813, he clerked and eventually became a partner at a law firm. He was also active in the Democratic-Republican Party.  At the age of … Continue reading On This Day in Supreme Court History—November 28, 1872—Justice Nelson Retired from the Court

On This Day in Supreme Court History—November 15, 1882

On this day in 1882, Supreme Court Justice Felix Frankfurter was born in Vienna, Austria. At the age of twelve, he moved to New York’s lower east side with his parents and five siblings. Despite not learning English until he came to the United States, he soon became an exceptional student. He graduated first in … Continue reading On This Day in Supreme Court History—November 15, 1882

News Roundup: Week of October 29, 2018

In addition to the Supreme Court’s latest session of oral arguments and its announcement that it had granted certiorari in some new cases (see here), there was other news as well last week. Term Limits for the Court The Hill’s Lydia Wheeler wrote in an article this week about a new poll conducted by Fix … Continue reading News Roundup: Week of October 29, 2018

Justice O’Connor’s Second Retirement

Retired Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor announced this week that “some time ago,” her doctors diagnosed her with “the beginning stages of dementia, probably Alzheimer’s disease.” For this reason, she explained, she is “no longer able to participate in public life.” Justice O’Connor retired from the Court in 2005 to care for her husband … Continue reading Justice O’Connor’s Second Retirement

An International View of the Supreme Court Confirmation Process

 This guest post is by Patricia Villa Berger, a J.S.D. candidate at Chicago-Kent College of Law. The debate over Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation to the Supreme Court captured the nation’s attention. Political analysts and legal experts studied this story from the perspective of party politics, the upcoming midterm elections, gender relations, judicial virtues and temperament, standards … Continue reading An International View of the Supreme Court Confirmation Process