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Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg passes away at 87

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The advocate of gender and LGBTQ equality died of cancer at her home surrounded by family.

Ruth Bader Ginsburg (Photo through Creative Commons)

WASHINGTON — Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, a liberal stalwart on the court and icon, passed away from cancer on Friday, Sept. 18.

A statement from the Supreme Court said she passed away surrounded by her family at her home in Washington, D.C., due to complications of metastatic pancreas cancer. She was appointed to the court by Bill Clinton in 1993 and was only the second woman on the high court.

Chief Justice John G. Roberts, Jr. said of Justice Ginsburg, “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 Supreme Court has lost a giant,” said U.S. Rep. Chuy Garcia (D-Chicago) in a Facebook post.

U.S. Rep Darin LaHood (R-Peoria) called Ginsburg a pioneer.

“Now she belongs to the ages,” said U.S. Rep Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-Schaumburg). “Justice Ginsburg’s memory is a blessing, but her loss is a tragic one for our country. Justice Ginsburg championed equality, progress, and expanding the circle of inclusion. It’s imperative that her successor continues that work.”

“Tonight, we are inspired to fight on by the life and example of Ruth Bader Ginsburg,” said Colleen Connell, executive director of the ACLU of Illinois. “As an lawyer and Justice, she helped perfect our Constitution, fundamentally advanced protections for all and championed civil liberties for all. We now can only follow her path and continue to work toward a more perfect union. Thank you RBG for all you have done.”

“There are no words for the incredible loss we suffer with the passing of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg,” said Tara Bell, executive director of the Rainbow Cafe LGBT Youth Center in Carbondale. “She is a heroine for women and the LGBTQ community, with a long history of accomplishments.”

In her time on the Supreme Court, Ginsburg voted for gender equality in education and the military with the Equal Protection Clause, marriage equality for LGBTQ individuals with Obergefell v. Hodges, women’s health access and reproductive rights with Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt, and most recently in support of Title VII protecting LGBTQ workers from discrimination.

“Now, more than ever, it is crucial for the LGBTQ community to remain present and involved; so much is at stake if her US Supreme Court seat is filled by anyone who does not honor and respect our civil and human rights,” Bell said. “But first, we must take a moment to mourn this loss. With deep regards and respect, we honor Supreme Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.”

Equality Illinois called Ginsburg a “champion” in a Facebook post.

“Justice Ginsburg was a consistent champion as an attorney and as a justice on the Supreme Court for the civil rights of LGBTQ people, gender equality, and reproductive justice. Her legacy is profound. Rest in power, Justice Ginsburg,” the organization said.

NPR reported that Ginsburg dictated this statement to her granddaughter Clara Spera: “My most fervent wish is that i I will not be replaced until a new president is installed.”

According to ABC News, Trump will be releasing a list of possible Supreme Court appointees. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) has already said that the Senate will vote for a replacement.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) sent out this tweet, a word-for-word reprint of McConnell’s statement on a SCOTUS vacancy in the last year of the Obama administration.

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