Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has died following a long battle with cancer, the court announced Friday night. She was 87.
Ginsburg was the second female justice on the court and was called a “jurist of historic stature” by Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. in a statement.
Ginsburg was surrounded by her family at her home in Washington, D.C., Friday evening when she died due to complications of metastatic pancreatic cancer, according to a U.S. Supreme Court announcement.
“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,” Roberts added.
Her death now gives President Trump an opportunity to name her successor — a nomination that could come about six weeks before the Nov. 3 election in what is sure to become an instant flashpoint in the race.
New York Sen. Chuck Schumer — the U.S. Senate Democratic leader — was quick to call for any nomination to be delayed until after the election, tweeting Friday night: “The American people should have a voice in the selection of their next Supreme Court Justice. Therefore, this vacancy should not be filled until we have a new president.”
Schumer added a few minutes later: “Tonight, we mourn the passing of a giant in American history, a champion for justice, a trailblazer for women. She would want us all to fight as hard as we can to preserve her legacy.”
Republican Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida, however, spoke about Ginsburg’s legacy in a tweet after her death was announced, writing: “Even those who disagreed with many of her decisions recognize Justice Ginsburg was a woman of extraordinary intellect & an American who had a historic impact on the court & the nation.”
Trump was addressing a crowd in Bemidji, Minn., on Friday night when Ginsburg’s death was announced. He said at the end of the address that the “next president will have one, two, three or four Supreme Court justices” to name.
ABC News, quoting sources in the president’s circle, said Trump will put forward — “in the next few days” — the name of his nominee to replace Ginsburg.
Trump’s team earlier this month released a list of 20 additional names the president will consider nominating as U.S. Supreme Court justices, calling on rival Joe Biden’s side to do the same.
Ginsburg was born in Brooklyn in 1933 and is survived by her two children, four grandchildren, two step-grandchildren, and one great-grandchild. Her husband, Martin David Ginsburg, died in 2010.
Lisa Kashinsky contributed to this report.