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Breyer’s retirement won’t change court

Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer is retiring sometime this year, according to numerous sources, giving President Joe Biden his first chance to nominate a replacement with a majority, however slim, in the Senate to confirm his choice.

A year from now, he might have a tougher time as the Republicans are considered favorites to take back control of the Senate in the November elections.

Biden has vowed to place the first Black woman on the court, and the speculation on who that might be has already started.

Biden’s nomination, whoever it is, won’t change the solid 6-3 conservative split in the Supreme Court. Breyer is a liberal member of the court, and his replacement is likely to be liberal as well.

Democrats in the Senate will be poised to give a quick hearing to Biden’s nominee. Since the Republicans changed the 60-vote majority rule for confirming a Supreme Court justice during the Trump administration, the 50-50 split, with Vice President Kamala Harris as the tiebreaker, is all they will need.

Supreme Court justices serve long careers, and whoever Biden appoints will be serving long after he and Mitch McConnel are gone. It is incumbent on presidents to appoint justices who will serve with distinction and integrity, moving beyond the partisanship that may attend their nomination and confirmation. We pray President Biden will make his decision with wisdom.

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