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Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg Announces Hiring of Law Clerks Through 2019

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Retirement Unlikely

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the de facto head of the progressive wing of the Supreme Court, has announced the hiring of law clerks through the 2019 term.

“The announcement bucks ongoing speculation that Ginsburg, 84, is nearing retirement,” Newsweek reported Friday. “Typically, justices planning on stepping down don’t hire all of their clerks for the upcoming term.”

Above the Law, which provides news and insights about the world of law, provided the list of Supreme Court clerk hires:

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg
1. Alyssa Barnard (Columbia 2015 / Nathan (S.D.N.Y.) / Katzmann)
2. Marco Basile (Harvard 2015 / Watford / Barron)
3. Susan Pelletier (Harvard 2016 / Garland)
4. Michael Qian (Stanford 2016 / Garland / Bristow Fellow)

“I can’t imagine what this place would be — I can’t imagine what the country would be — with Donald Trump as our president,” Ginsburg told The New York Times in an interview published in July 2016. “For the country, it could be four years. For the court, it could be — I don’t even want to contemplate that.”

Ginsburg subsequently apologized, noting that “judges should avoid commenting on a candidate for public office. In the future I will be more circumspect.”

Trump, naturally, attacked her on Twitter for the apology—advising “her mind is shot” and calling for her to resign. Ginsburg, thankfully, did not resign.

Months later, and nearly a year into the Donald Trump presidency, it isn’t Ginsburg’s mental state that’s being questioned—it’s Donald Trump’s. Early Saturday, just six days into 2018, the president asserted he is a “very stable genius” and noted that his two greatest assets were “mental stability and being, like, really smart.”

The claims, which Twitter users quickly noted were ridiculous, follow Michael Wolff‘s bombshell tell-all “Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House, as well as Yale University psychiatry professor Dr. Brandy X. Lee’s warnings to Capitol Hill lawmakers that Donald Trump is unstable, and is only going to get worse.

“We feel that the rush of tweeting is an indication of his falling apart under stress,” Lee told the lawmakers.

In July, Ruth Bader Ginsburg told the New York Times she intends to remain a Supreme Court Justice “as long as I can do it full steam.” Her voice is essential for LGBT equality cases that head before the nation’s highest court.

In December, the court reviewed the Masterpiece Cakeshop case, in which an anti-gay Christian baker refused to sell a same-sex couple a wedding cake. As NCRM has reported, the Supreme Court was seen as dismissive and skeptical of LGBT civil rights in the case.

While no final judgments should be made about how justices will rule, reporters who covered the case noted that Ginsburg was “extremely skeptical” of the anti-gay arguments.

As some on Twitter have noted:

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'WORSE THAN NOTHING'

‘Basically Outlaws Responding to This Pandemic’: Texans Blast Abbott for New ‘Right to Infect’ Order

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Texas Republican Governor Greg Abbott is under fire after signing a wide-ranging COVID-19 executive order Thursday that bans any mask or vaccine mandates, bans anyone requesting or requiring proof of vaccination to obtain goods or services, but promotes “personal responsibility” as the means to control what is quickly becoming a new Delta variant-fueled wave of the coronavirus pandemic.

According to the CDC Texas has had over 47,000 new COVID cases and 240 new COVID deaths in the past seven days, with a huge 15%-19.9% positivity rate. Since the start of the pandemic Texas has, under Governor Abbott’s leadership, seen nearly 3.1 million coronavirus cases and almost 52,000 deaths. Texas reports just 52% of its population 12 and older has been vaccinated.

Abbott’s executive order says, “There are no COVID-19-related operating limits for any business or other establishment,” and “no person may he required by any jurisdiction to wear or to mandate the wearing of a face covering.”

“Texans are strongly encouraged as a matter of personal responsibility to consistently follow good hygiene, social-distancing. and other mitigation practices,” and vaccines “will never be mandated by the government,” although “it is strongly encouraged for those eligible to receive one.”

The order also overrides and voids any “COVID-19-related limitations imposed by local governmental entities or officials.”

One local Texas NBC affiliate reports, “Abbott pushes personal responsibility over government mandates as pandemic surges.”

Here’s what some Texans are saying:

 

 

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Dozens of House Republicans Refusing to Wear Masks March to Senate Side for ‘Taste of Freedom’

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After falsely blaming Speaker Nancy Pelosi for the newly-announced mask mandate on the House side of Congress, dozens of Republicans Thursday afternoon engaged in a performative protest, not against the coronavirus but against efforts to end the pandemic. What appeared to be 50 or so House GOP  lawmakers marched over to the Senate side of the Capitol Hill building for what one called a “taste of freedom.”

The Attending Physician of the United States Congress, following updated CDC guidance this week ordered anyone on the House side of the Capitol to wear a mask if in a group, regardless of vaccination status, but did not make the same order for the Senate side.

While Dr. Brian Monahan did not explain why the rules were different, at last cxount only about half of the Republicans on the House side have said they are vaccinated. Almost every Republican on the Senate side is. All Democrats on both sides are fully vaccinated. Dr. Monahan’s office announced fines and possible removal for repeat offenders.

Among those in the maskless pack making their way to the Senate side were Reps. Madison Cawthorn, Lauren Boebert, Louie Gohmert, Paul Gosar, Marjorie Taylor Greene, and Chip Roy.

Roll Call’s Chris Cioffi and The Hill’s Scott Wong posted video:

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TRUTH IN ADVERTISING?

Far Right Republican Concocts Fundraising Scheme to Bail Out Mask Rule-Breakers — but the Cash Goes to His Campaign

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Right-wing Rep. Madison Cawthorn (R-NC) is asking for donations so that he can pay for the fines for Congressional members and their staff who refuse to wear a mask in the Capitol. But when clicking the link to donate, it takes you to his campaign page.

Typical members of Congress are paid $174,000 annually, so it’s unclear why they would need donations to cover their own rule-breaking. Staffers certainly make much less, however, Washington, D.C. has mandated face masks in public places again. So, they would be in violation of the Capitol rules as well as D.C. rules. It’s unclear if their Republican members would be willing to pay their fees themselves if the staffer follows their boss’s lead.

While the Capitol has instituted fines, the Capitol Police released a statement that seemed like a veiled threat to those anti-maskers refusing to follow the rules.

“Regarding the House mask rule, there is no reason it should ever come to someone being arrested. Anyone who does not follow the rule will be asked to wear a mask or leave the premises. The Department’s requirement for officers to wear masks is for their health and safety,” said the statement.

See Cawthorn’s fundraising tweet below:

 

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