Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

Sandra Day O'Connor retires

Expand Messages
  • Greg Cannon
    http://apnews.myway.com/article/20050701/D8B2LF300.html O Connor Leaves Legacy As Key Swing Vote Jul 1, 10:47 AM (ET) By PETE YOST WASHINGTON (AP) - For a
    Message 1 of 3 , Jul 1, 2005
    • 0 Attachment
      http://apnews.myway.com/article/20050701/D8B2LF300.html

      O'Connor Leaves Legacy As Key Swing Vote

      Jul 1, 10:47 AM (ET)

      By PETE YOST

      WASHINGTON (AP) - For a quarter of a century, Sandra
      Day O'Connor held down the center on the Supreme
      Court, pleasing liberals by standing firmly for
      abortion rights but voting with the majority to put
      Republican President Bush in office.

      The first woman to serve on the court, O'Connor has
      been a crucial vote in holding the middle ground on
      landmark rulings from abortion to abuses in money and
      politics.

      O'Connor held the center while the court became more
      conservative in the 24 years since President Reagan
      appointed her. Still, she often sided with the more
      conservative justices, as in the ruling that handed
      Bush victory in the 2000 election.

      In 1992, O'Connor voted to uphold the 1973 decision
      legalizing abortion, calling it "a rule of law and a
      component of liberty we cannot renounce."

      She added that some state restrictions on abortion
      were permissible as long as they did not represent an
      undue burden on a woman's right to terminate a
      pregnancy.

      She was in the majority when the high court outlawed
      capital punishment for the mentally retarded. She was
      in the minority with the conservative wing of the
      court when more liberal justices ruled that juries,
      not judges, must make the crucial decisions that can
      lead to a death sentence.

      In the 1980s, the Reagan administration moved to
      dismantle preferential treatment for minorities.
      O'Connor was a critical vote in thwarting the
      administration's plans.

      She was the crucial vote when the court upheld
      affirmative action policies on the nation's college
      campuses. She played a crucial tie-breaking role as
      the author of the court's final word on race-conscious
      legislative redistricting.

      "We proceed case by case as they come to us, and not
      with any overarching objective that the court itself"
      has developed, O'Connor has said. "We aren't here
      trying to develop something in the sense of where the
      country should go."

      She voted to uphold a public Christmas display
      including a creche, but voted to bar a public
      Christmas display of a creche alone. Her view was that
      the Constitution prohibits any government action that
      is intended to send a message endorsing religion. Her
      vote determined the outcome in both cases.

      The only member of the court who had held elective
      office, she co-authored the majority opinion
      supporting a law to clean up the system for financing
      political campaigns. O'Connor was a state senator and
      county judge in Arizona.

      Amid many changes on the court over the years,
      O'Connor and Justice John Paul Stevens played
      steadfast roles in the middle.

      Early in her tenure, O'Connor expressed hostility to
      the 1973 ruling legalizing abortion, saying that its
      central premise - permitting greater state control as
      a woman's pregnancy proceeds - has "no justification
      in the law or logic."

      But on the much more conservative court of 1992,
      O'Connor declared, "Our obligation is to define the
      liberty of all. We reaffirm the constitutionally
      protected liberty of women to obtain an abortion."

      O'Connor later voted with the 5-4 majority in striking
      down Nebraska's late-term abortion prohibition.

      Some Republicans have recently seen potential
      vacancies, particularly O'Connor's possible
      retirement, as an opportunity to increase pressure on
      Bush to nominate a strongly anti-abortion candidate
      for the next Supreme Court vacancy.

      ---

      http://www.supremecourtus.gov/
    • Ram Lau
      Lady Liberty is giving up... the worst news of my generation. Ram
      Message 2 of 3 , Jul 1, 2005
      • 0 Attachment
        Lady Liberty is giving up... the worst news of my generation.

        Ram
      • Greg Cannon
        I am also sad to see her leave the court. Oddly enough, she was born in my city, El Paso, and for a short time she went to a private elementary school a few
        Message 3 of 3 , Jul 1, 2005
        • 0 Attachment
          I am also sad to see her leave the court. Oddly
          enough, she was born in my city, El Paso, and for a
          short time she went to a private elementary school a
          few blocks from my house, Radford. Of course she lived
          most of her life in Arizona, and apparently grew up on
          a ranch there. I don't have any proof for her being
          born here or going to Radford, it's just what people
          say.

          --- Ram Lau <ramlau@...> wrote:

          > Lady Liberty is giving up... the worst news of my
          > generation.
          >
          > Ram
          >
          >
          >
          >
        Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.