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Breyer retirement announcement imminent?


This is purely second-hand, but someone I know very well and trust completely is fairly tight with Stephen Breyer, and tells me that Breyer is very seriously considering announcing his retirement before the end of the current SCOTUS term, possibly even in the next few weeks. (This person gave me their permission to post this).

We’ll see, but this possibility raises two closely related practical issues:

(1) Will Republican opposition to a potential nominee be unanimous?

(2) If the answer to (1) turns out to be yes, what will Sinema do? (I’m not worried about Manchin).

I’m fairly concerned that the answer to the first question will be yes, because of the light-speed radicalization of the GOP. Anybody that Biden nominates will naturally have highly problematic things in the candidate’s record, such as being a Black woman who once said something mean about a white man or evinced some sort of skepticism about some aspect of Our Glorious Constitution and/or the World’s Best Legal System ™ etc.

And this makes me quite concerned about (2), because I don’t trust Sinema as far as I can throw her with one hand tied behind my back. And times being what they are, Sinema might not end up being the only Democrat to worry about, again assuming that Bain Capital LLC and the Furrow of Deep Concern et. al. decide that they’re going to hold out until the November election.

One consequence of this is that I fully expect that Breyer’s retirement announcement, if it comes, will make his retirement effective upon the confirmation of his successor.

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