Paski added that the White House had “no additional details or information to share” at the time. CNN reported that Breyer could formally announce his retirement as early as Jan. 27.
A member of the liberal wing, Breyer has consistently supported abortion rights throughout his time on the court.
In 2000, Breyer authored the decision in Stenberg v. Carhart, which found that Nebraska’s law banning partial-birth abortions was unconstitutional as it did not have an exception to preserve the health of the mother. In Hill v. Colorado, which was decided one day before Stenberg v. Carhart, Breyer joined with the majority in upholding a Colorado law prohibiting protests outside of abortion clinics.
If Breyer were to retire, it is a near-certainty that President Joe Biden (D) would appoint someone of a similar ideology to the Supreme Court. This is Biden’s first chance to appoint a justice to the court.
Due to Breyer’s age, calls for his retirement have been increasing since Biden’s election, to avoid a repeat of what happened when Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg died in September 2020.
In 2020, shortly before the presidential election, Ginsburg, who was considered to be on the court’s liberal wing, died after a battle with cancer. President Donald Trump (R) then appointed Justice Amy Coney Barrett, a conservative, to the Supreme Court, shifting the balance of the court.
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