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Rehnquist Says He's Not Stepping Down Any Time Soon

While I was on my blogging sabbatical I was bemused by the rampant speculation about the possible retirement of Chief Justice William Rehnquist. All of the information that I was getting was that he was getting healthier and working longer - hardly a sign of impending retirement.

WASHINGTON (AP) - Squelching rumors of his retirement, Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist said Thursday he will continue heading the Supreme Court as long his health permits. "I'm not about to announce my retirement," he said in a statement obtained by The Associated Press.

"I want to put to rest the speculation and unfounded rumors of my imminent retirement," said Rehnquist, 80, and ailing with thyroid cancer. "I will continue to perform my duties as chief justice as long as my health permits."

Rehnquist released the statement hours after being released from an Arlington, Va., hospital after being treated for two days with a fever.

It really would have been interesting to have had two Supreme Court nominees being confirmed at, essentially, the same time. It already promises to be a three-ring special interest circus, but perhaps without the second vacancy it won't be the greatest show on Earth...


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Comments (3)

Good Lord, retire already. ... (Below threshold)
earth:

Good Lord, retire already. He makes Sheets Byrd look healthy. Besides, this would make it even more likely that Dubya will nominate Karl Rove.

I think he wants to use up ... (Below threshold)

I think he wants to use up his entire term, which is "life."

I think he also wants to break the all-time record for a Chief Justice. If he can hold out another couple years, he's the gold medal winner.

A correction, Will:<p... (Below threshold)
fatman:

A correction, Will:

As of today, Rehnquist has served on the Court thirty-three years, six months, eight days, but only fourteen years, eight months, nineteen days as CJ. Before that he was an AJ on the Burger Court.

Now William O. Douglas is the longest serving justice in the Court's history, serving thirty-six years, six months, twenty-five days, and Rehnquist has a shot at that mark, IF he can hang on. But John Marshall served thirty-four years, five months, two days as CHIEF Justice. Rehnquist would have to serve over fifteen more years to surpass Marshall. And I'll go out on a limb here and say that there ain't a snowballs-chance-in-a-hot-place of that happening.




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