‘A trailblazer’: Carper, Coons mourn loss of revered Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg

Ruth Bader Ginsburg. TNS photo

WASHINGTON — Following Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s death on Friday, Delaware’s U.S. Congressional delegation saluted her contributions to the law and legacy regarding gender equality throughout her life.

Sen. Tom Carper, D-Del.’s statement issued in the wake of Ginsburg’s passing included, in part:

“Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg may have been small in stature, but, tonight, our nation lost an absolute giant.

“Her intellect was unmatched. Her work ethic was unrivaled; neither cancer nor chemotherapy could keep her from the important business of our nation’s highest court. And her lifelong pursuit of true equality under the law — for women, for people of color, for LGBTQ Americans, for workers — was unparalleled.

“Justice Ginsburg was a trailblazer whose profound impact on our laws and the very fabric of our society cannot be overstated.
“I know her legacy will live on, especially in all the women and young girls she inspired throughout her remarkable life.”

Emphasizing the recognition due Ginsburg in the wake of her death, Sen. Carper said he was “loathe to even mention the political implications of Justice Ginsburg’s passing.”

The impact of filling the vacancy will be enormous, however, and Sen. Carper said he would oppose any Supreme Court nominee until after Inauguration Day.

“We are in the midst of a presidential election; early voting is already underway in some states and millions of Americans are requesting ballots,” he said.

“The American people deserve to choose the president who will fill this vacancy. The American people also remember the unprecedented and shameful blockade of Merrick Garland in 2016.

Flags at half staff wave in the breeze at George C. Wright Jr. Municipal Park in Smyrna to honor Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Delaware State News/Marc Clery

“If my Republican colleagues reverse course a few short years later and try to fill this vacancy before the next president is sworn in, it would be hypocrisy of the highest order …

“[I] will do everything I can to fight for fairness — the principle to which Ruth Bader Ginsburg dedicated her entire life.

“I urge my Republican colleagues to avoid a hurried and politicized process that will further erode the American public’s trust in both the United States Senate and the Supreme Court.”

According to Sen. Chris Coons, D-Del.: “Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg was a towering figure in America’s long march toward gender equality and she inspired millions around the world. Her jurisprudence was guided by an unwavering commitment to the Constitution and justice for all Americans.”

Sen. Coons referenced the process to find a replacement as well, maintaining that “Out of respect for her enormous contributions, with faith in our democracy, and mindful of the lasting consequences of her replacement, we should honor her final wish that she should be replaced only after the next presidential inauguration.

“Given all the challenges facing our country, this is a moment when we should come together rather than having a rushed confirmation process further divide us.”

Said Rep. Lisa Blunt Rochester, D-Del.:

“My heart aches. Millions of women were able to achieve their goals, personal and professional because of the work of Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

“Her work on behalf of her male clients was the truest mark of her commitment to gender equality and her entire career was a testament to the ideal of equal justice under the law. While small in stature, she was a giant of law, intellect, and American history.

“We were graced by her presence on earth. May her legacy live on through each of us.”

On Saturday, the Delaware State Bar Association recognized Ginsburg in a Facebook post, beginning with a quote:

“Fight for the things that you care about, but do it in a way that will lead others to join you.”

The post continued with “U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the second woman appointed to the Supreme Court where she served for 27 years, has passed away at the age of 87.

“Rest In Peace, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.”

Dr. Samuel B. Hoff, a George Washington Distinguished Professor Emeritus of History and Political Science at Delaware State University, said, “One word describes Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s career and fight against multiple cancers: tenacious.

“From her fight for equal rights for women as a student, professor, attorney, judge, and justice, she never backed down from her beliefs and because of that broke many barriers of gender discrimination.

“Her courage in the face of colon, pancreatic, lung, and liver cancer was equally inspiring.”

Ginsburg’s close personal relationship with late Supreme Court Associate Justice Antonin Scalia “was emblematic of her ability to separate personal from professional. Though opposite ideologically, they were friends as well as colleagues.

“In the toxic partisan warfare of Washington, it was refreshing to see people of different legal and political persuasion get along.”

Not to be forgotten, Dr. Hoff said, was Ginsburg’s 13 years as a judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia when she wrote more than 700 opinions.

Prior to becoming a federal judge, Dr. Hoff said Ginsburg represented clients at the Supreme Court, winning five of six “landmark women’s right cases.”