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Ginsburg And Scalia: 'Best Buddies'

Feb 15, 2016

Like many pals, Antonin Scalia and Ruth Bader Ginsburg could have a pretty good argument now and then, but not let it affect their close friendship.

During their time together on the United States Supreme Court, Justice Scalia, a staunch conservative, and Justice Ginsburg, a staunch liberal, rarely found themselves on the same side of controversial issues. But in an era when political divisions drive many in Washington apart on a personal level, their disagreements remained intellectual.

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The White House says the president will not move to appoint a Supreme Court replacement for Justice Antonin Scalia while the Senate is in recess this week.

In an interview with ABC News, White House spokesman Eric Schultz said Obama would would wait to announce his nominee until Congress returns from its break later this month. In an email to NPR, Schultz said the White House had ruled out a recess appointment "this week."

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Within hours of Justice Antonin Scalia's death, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell aimed to squash any expectation that President Obama will get to name his successor.

"The American people should have a voice in the selection of their next Supreme Court justice," he said in a statement. "Therefore, this vacancy should not be filled until we have a new president."

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After the sudden death of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia over the weekend, President Obama said he intends to fill the vacancy in his final months in office.

(SOUNDBITE OF SPEECH)

The Baltimore health system put Robert Peace back together after a car crash shattered his pelvis. Then it nearly killed him, he says.

A painful bone infection that developed after surgery and a lack of follow-up care landed him in the operating room five more times, kept him homebound for a year and left him with joint damage and a severe limp.

"It's really hard for me to trust what doctors say," Peace said, adding that there was little after-hospital care to try to control the infection. "They didn't do what they were supposed to do."

Antonin Scalia's death leaves a void in many ways, but the most immediate effect will be on the outcome of several major cases pending before the Supreme Court.

Scalia's absence means some of these cases may result in 4-4 tie votes in the weeks and months just ahead. In that event, the rulings made by lower courts will be allowed to stand. Court observers have been scrambling to assess which of the pending cases in the current term are most likely to wind up in ties.

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The Appointment Clause of the Constitution (Article II, Section 2, Clause 2) states that the president "shall nominate, and by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, shall appoint ... Judges of the Supreme Court."

President Obama says he plans to pick a Supreme Court nominee following the death of Justice Antonin Scalia, setting up a confrontation with Republicans who control the Senate.

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And as promised, NPR's Sam Sanders is with us now from South Carolina.

Good morning, Sam.

SAM SANDERS, BYLINE: Hey. How are you?

MARTIN: I'm well. So we just heard about the political split in the Garner family, in particular.

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The presidential candidates are wrestling with the issue of political money, which emerged as a bigger issue this cycle than in any presidential race since the 1970s.

Bernie Sanders started last week's Democratic debate with this point: "We have today a campaign finance system which is corrupt, which is undermining American democracy, which allows Wall Street and billionaires to pour huge sums of money into the political process."

And Hillary Clinton, closing the debate, said, "We agree that we've gotta get unaccountable money out of politics."

Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia died unexpectedly on Saturday. We spoke to NPR's Legal Affairs Correspondent Nina Totenberg about his life, legacy and what's next.

1. Let's talk about Scalia's legal perspective. He was known as a proponent of originalism. Can you tell us a bit about that?

Originalism, as defined by Justice Scalia and others, is that what is in the Constitution literally is what the founding fathers meant.

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With two contests down and the South Carolina primary only a week away, the six remaining Republican candidates took the debate stage Saturday night.

The debate, hosted by CBS News, featured lots of sparring between Donald Trump, Jeb Bush and Ted Cruz. Who spoke the longest? As always, NPR had its stopwatch at the ready.

President Obama struck a somber tone, remembering the late-Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia as a "towering legal mind" who influenced a generation, but made it clear, he intends to replace him.

"I plan to fulfill my constitutional responsibilities to nominate a successor in — due time," Obama said. "There will be plenty of time for me to do so, and for the Senate to fulfill its responsibility to give that person a fair hearing and a timely vote."

South Carolina is known for its rough and tumble politics, and Saturday night's CBS News debate in Greenville, S.C., certainly held true to that characterization.

It was the most vicious and unruly debate yet this cycle, prompting moderator John Dickerson to even interject at one point that he was "going to turn this car around!"

Lawmakers, presidential candidates on both sides and other prominent Americans have been reacting to the death of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia. Scalia, 79, was found dead Saturday at a luxury ranch in West Texas.

Both conservatives and liberals have been describing him as brilliant, patriotic and a defender of the Constitution. And while several commenters have said they disagreed with Scalia's views, they all professed sound respect for him. We've rounded up some of the tributes.

Justice Antonin Scalia loved a good fight.

So it's only fitting that news of his death at age 79 ignited an immediate and partisan battle over who might take his place on the U.S. Supreme Court.

The latest batch of Hillary Clinton's emails from her time at the State Department includes 84 additional classified documents.

The new emails from her controversial private server, which were retroactively classified since she left office, include 81 which had been upgraded to confidential status and three to secret status. (Classified parts were redacted.)

The sudden and shocking death of Supreme Court icon Antonin Scalia this weekend will have enormous repercussions for the U.S. legal system and political process, both in the immediate term and for many years to come.

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Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, perhaps the leading voice of uncompromising conservatism on the nation's highest court, was found dead Saturday, Chief Justice John Roberts has confirmed. Scalia, who had been staying at a luxury ranch in West Texas, was 79 years old.

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The political world is already turning its attention to South Carolina, where the remaining Republican presidential candidates debate tonight. The Palmetto State votes Feb. 20th in the GOP primary and Feb. 27th for the Democrats.

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